Cleaner water for 2.5 million people

In the two years since her family started using a DelAgua cook stove and water filter, Nyirangendahimana Priscille says she uses less wood for cooking and her house in a small Rwandan village is free of smoke. But the biggest difference is that Priscille’s children are healthier, and because they're no longer missing days due to illness, they are now succeeding in school.

“Rwandan families want to clean up the water, they want to clean up the air,” said Evan Thomas (pictured right), mechanical engineering faculty and director of the Maseeh College's SWEETLab, where he and his students developed cell phone-based sensors to measure use of the stoves and filters.

Priscille’s household is one of 100,000 to receive products so far through DelAgua, of which Thomas is COO and principal investigator. DelAgua aims to distribute 1.2 million clean-burning cook stoves and filters and educate 3 million of the country’s poorest residents.

The project is wrapping up its second phase, and starting in January the London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine in partnership with PSU, OHSU and Emory University will collect health indicators and data from the SWEETLab sensors for a year.

“My team and I have been working here in Rwanda since 2004 on similar programs, and to finally realize an impact on a significant number of people is well worth the effort,” said Thomas.

(Photos courtesy of DelAgua)

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DelAgua project

SWEETLab technology