Lifestraw – The life straw portable water filter

Overview

The LifeStraw® portable water filter, named “Best Innovation of the Year” by Time Magazine in 2005, is the perfect solution when you don’t have access to safe and clean drinking water.

LifeStraw® is extremely easy to use, very reliable and ultra-light, weighing only 56 grams. The filter enables you to safely drink water from contaminated water sources by transforming even the dirtiest water into clean drinking water. This makes it an ideal tool for hikers, campers and people who spend a lot of time outdoors in general.

LifeStraw® is also a valuable tool to have in your home for emergency situations such as storms or flooding when the local water source can get contaminated. 

LifeStraw® filters up to 1,000 liters of water, and removes a minimum of 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria and 99.9% of parasites. Furthermore, the filter doesn’t contain any chemicals, batteries or moving parts.

LifeStraw® is developed for extreme conditions and is one of the most advanced and durable personal water filters available today. Rigorous laboratory testing of LifeStraw® proved that its performance exceeded U.S. EPA water filtration requirements for bacteria and parasites, including Escherichia coli, Cryptosporidium, and Giardia lamblia, and other waterborne pathogens.

Features

  • Filters up to 1,000 liters of water
  • Removes 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria (˃LOG 6 reduction)
  • Removes 99.9% of waterborne protozoan parasites (˃LOG 3 reduction)
  • Reduces turbidity, filtering down to 0.2 microns
  • Ultra-light: weighs only 56 grams
  • Width: 2.5 centimeter
  • Length: 22.5 centimeter

Background

LifeStraw® was invented by the Swiss-based company Vestergaard-Frandsen in 2005 and the technology has since been deployed to almost every major natural disaster.

The filter was originally developed for natural disasters and as a game-changing innovation for the millions of people in the developing world without access to clean and safe drinking water. The straw has won a number of prestigious awards for its unique design and functionality.

The strength and the ease of use combined with its high quality and light weight has now made  LifeStraw® a favorite among the outdoor market  in North America.  WaterNlife is proud to make LifeStraw® available to consumers in Europe, Turkey, Russia and Japan where WaterNlife is the exclusive distributor.

Highlights

  • Contains no chemicals and is BPA-free
  • Uses no batteries and has no moving parts
  • Very high flow rate
  • Easy to clean
  • Very durable with no maintenance
  • Used worldwide in most major natural disasters since 2005

Specification

LifeStraw® filters down to an incredible 0.2 microns. This means that the filter removes 99.9999% of all bacteria and 99.9% of all parasites and reduces turbidity (muddiness) by filtering out suspended particles.

Bacteria removed include:
  • Salmonella
  • Campylobacter
  • Escherichia coli
  • Vibrio cholera
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • Shigella
Parasites removed include:
  • Giardia lamblia (“Beaver Fever”)
  • Cryptosporidium parvum
  • Entamoeba histolytica

Please note: The LifeStraw® will currently not desalinate water, or filter heavy metals or viruses.

How to use LifeStraw®

Anyone who can drink out of a straw can use LifeStraw®. Simply place the LifeStraw® directly into the water source or pour the water into a cup and sip the water up through the straw. There can be a little resistance, the first time you use the straw, until the membrane is wet.  

When you’re finished drinking, simply blow air back through the straw to remove dirt and other materials.

LifeStraw® for hiking and camping

Lifestraw for hiking

Access to clean water is critical while hiking. At only 56 grams, LifeStraw® is the lightest and easiest way to filter water while on the go. LifeStraw® accomplishes the same goal as other good water filters, but does so at just a tenth of the weight, and often a lot faster and with a less complicated process.

If you consume the recommended 3-4 liters of water per day while hiking, LifeStraw® will last you between 250-330 days of hiking. If you are in a rush, there is no need to stop and filter water by the lake. Just scoop your water bottle full, and sip from it as you walk. Or, dip the end of the straw right into the lake and drink until you are hydrated.

LifeStraw® for travel and backpacking

Lifestraw for backpacking

Because the LifeStraw® is so small and lightweight (56 grams), it’s great to put in your backpack or to wear around your neck. It even fits in your pocket making it ideal for travel in countries with unreliable drinking water or if you visit areas where you are uncertain about the water quality.  If you have ever been sick from drinking dirty water when travelling, you’ll understand the importance of drinking filtered water.

LifeStraw® for emergency preparedness and survival

Lifestraw save lives

In light of recent natural disasters, many people are realizing they cannot depend on their regular water supply during an emergency. Because LifeStraw® is easy to use and portable, it’s  perfect to have in an emergency preparedness kit or simply as an extra safety precaution at home. Buy a LifeStraw® for each member in your household; it is a low cost investment in security.

Awards and recognition

Award winning Lifestraw

LifeStraw® has received significant accolades since it was introduced. Time magazine named LifeStraw® the “Best Invention of 2005”. Reader’s Digest honored it as “Europe’s best Invention”.  In 2008, LifeStraw® won the Saatchi & Saatchi Award for “World Changing Ideas.” Esquire called it “Innovation of the Year” and Forbes noted that LifeStraw® is “One of ten things that will change the way we live”. Gizmag proclaimed it “Invention of the Century" and The New York Times described it as “A water purifier that could save lives”. Furthermore, LifeStraw® has been featured in numerous publications across the world.

Technology

Technology behind Lifestraw

What makes the LifeStraw® so effective is the hollow-fiber microfiltration membrane. The manufacturer of LifeStraw®, Vestergaard Frandsen, has used thousands of hours in its research facilities to master the technology.

Explained in a very simple way, the inside of the LifeStraw® consists of a large number of strings looking very much like spaghetti. Each string is covered with very small holes with a diameter of 0.2 microns or five  hundred times smaller than the diameter of a human hair. The extremely small holes filter the water to a very high standard when the water passes through the membrane, and stops bacteria, parasites and turbidity from passing through.

History

LifeStraw® is manufactured by Vestergaard-Frandsen, a Swiss-based company specialized in developing game-changing solutions for people at the base of the pyramid. The company’s business model is based on a humanitarian entrepreneurship approach where doing good is good business. The company is dedicated to help  achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.

The LifeStraw® technology has been used in more than 65 countries worldwide. Vestergaard Frandsen is also the world’s biggest manufacturer of long-lasting insecticide treated malaria bed nets which have played a significant role in the successful reduction of malaria during the last decade.

Support

Worldwide, more children die of diarrheal disease than of HIV/AIDs, malaria, and measles combined and according to WHO more than 750 million people worldwide do not have access to clean drinking water. WaterNlife is dedicated to help solve this devastating problem. Together with Vestergaard Frandsen, the inventor of LifeStraw®, WaterNlife will donate 1,000 liters of clean and safe drinking water to children in need in Sub-Saharan Africa for every LifeStraw® product sold. The focus area is sub-Saharan Africa where the water crisis is particularly devastating.

WaterNlife will provide updates on the progress of its donations on a regular basis.


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