Water Filter Clay Pot Success

10L bucket
20L bucket

First protype completed ceramic filter water pot

Water permeating through the filter

First water filtration flow rate test. 0.5 L/hr. A bit too slow. The final product will require a greater rice husk to clay mix ratio.


The first prototype clay water filter made locally in Ifakara by a womens pottery group has passed initial water filtration tests.

I am very excited that this technology, first started in Central America and undertaken commercially in Asia, can be transferred and produced with minimal resources for a very low cost. Im confident that this technology will be uptaken by the local communities here.

To make the clay pots pass water we mix in ground rice husks. When the pot is fired the husk burns out and leaves tiny pores for water to pass. The next step is to determine the correct clay:rice husk mix ratio. It is a function of water flow rate versus bacteria removal. The commercial pots produced in Cambodia pass water at around 1.5-2.5 L/hr and remove >98% of bacteria. Detailed studies have shown a 50% reduction in reported diarrhoea cases in communities that use them.

We have the facilities to do flow rate and bacteria tests here in Ifakara.

The pot is very strong. It fits into either a 10L or (snugly) into a 20L water bucket. These buckets are very common here (basically every house has one for the collection of well water). The clay filter pot has about a 10L capacity. The cost will be approximately $2-4 per pot. The goal is to produce a business for the local pottery women that will lead to improved health in the community through the production of safe water.

Initial flow rates through the first prototype are around 0.5L/hr. This is about 1/3rd to 1/5th of what we want for design.
We are (fingers crossed) close to achieving a locally produced household tool capable of producing safe water!