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Science Project for alleviating Arsenic Poisoning

posted Jun 16, 2012, 10:41 PM by Thabit Pulak   [ updated Oct 17, 2012, 4:25 PM ]
Over the past couple of months, I have been working on a science project, that aims to alleviate arsenic poisoning that occurs around the world, but more chronically affects Bangladesh, India, Thailand, and China. The current solutions are either costly, or require more maintenance than needed. Also these methods for alleviation are not open source, meaning that people cannot improve and built upon the filter without infringing patents. My goal was to develop an arsenic filter that removes arsenic efficiently, whilst being completely open-sourced. Doing vast research, and conducting experiments in my home, I finally developed a filter using nano iron particles that can be synthesized from home. The resulting filter removed arsenic, as well as bacteria in water. I displayed my project in various science fairs, like ISWEEEP, and Intel, both of which I got a high level of awards in. I won first internationally in the ISWEEEP fair, and 3rd Internationally in the Intel Engineering fair. I received numerous special awards, as well as an exemplary recognition by the EPA, the Patrick J Hurd Sustainability award. I hope these accolades can help bring up my credibility overseas to be able to actually implement the filter technology I have had 
researched and tested. Through doing this, lives will be saved. 

In order to complement my arsenic filter, I am currently now working on a arsenic test strip that is rapid, cheap, and easy to use. Current methods involve the use of expensive chemicals (nearly $100 USD) that take a long time to react, and are dangerous to dispose of. My method incorporates the use of the already synthesized nano-particles from the filter, and using their electrical conductive properties to detect the presence of arsenic in the water. I have already conceptualized the method, and did lots of research, and I saw that there is a promise in this method. I plan on visiting Bangladesh later this month to test out my method. Since I will be in Bangladesh for only one month, I plan on reinvigorating this iKormi organization there once again, and training workers there to work also in the arsenic remediation field using my newly devised test kit methodology. This will benefit the affected arsenic people of Bangladesh by quickly identifying arsenic affected areas and promptly providing them with a filtration solution. However, it will also benefit me by providing me with data on how my test theory is working out. Real-life data will allow me to determine whether my new methodology can actually be something that will be successful in Bangladesh, and replace existing methodology. As for now, only time can tell.