Unit operations approach for rapid disinfection of human waste based on drying/smoldering of solid and sand filtration/UV disinfection of liquid waste (Toronto Toilet)

2011 - 2015 • University of Toronto


Household scale wastewater treatment plant through sanitizing feces within 24 hours through mechanical dehydration and smoldering and sanitizing urine through membrane filtration and ultraviolet disinfection.


To describe how it works, one needs to follow the process from beginning to end: the waste is collected through a squat-style toilet (the target market is Asia and Africa, where such toilets are common). Waste will then be separated into liquid and solid streams using standard de-watering techniques. Disinfection of the solid stream will proceed by means of smouldering, a flameless combustion process similar to what occurs inside of a coal barbecue. For the liquid stream, a sand / UV filter will be used. We are still in the process of narrowing design pathways with a potential for a different unit approach to liquid disinfection.

This was an RTTC grant.

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The goal of this project is to develop a technology for treating solid waste streams through mechanical dehydration and smoldering that will sanitize feces within 24 hours. We also intend to develop a method for sanitizing urine through membrane filtration and ultraviolet disinfection. Essentially we are building a household scale wastewater treatment plant.

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Asia & Pacific Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Fundamental research and engineering Global North America Product design and engineering Treatment of wastewater or greywater University, education or research institution


Uploaded by:
Trevor Surridge (tmsinnovation)

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