A New Jersey company is harnessing the power of the sun to lead a revolution in how to guarantee safe, clean water around the world.
Lawrence-based WorldWater and Solar Technologies Inc. builds devices that combine the latest, most efficient solar panels with filters that take out any impurities in water.
"Wherever there's sunshine, we can deliver clean water," said Quentin Kelly, WorldWater's CEO and founder.
Solar is a dependable, renewable power source in areas where it is difficult to bring in diesel fuel.
Starting with a contract for the Defense Department to deliver a rugged, solar-powered water purifier over a decade ago, Kelly's company has branched out into work into areas of the U.S. hit by hurricanes, Haiti in the aftermath of an earthquake, and villages in Africa devastated by the Ebola crisis.
"In many cases, water is available, but it's not available where it's needed. So you need to have the distribution of the water, and it needs to be cleaned up," Kelly said.
Chasing News got a demonstration of the Mobile MaxPure -- the portable purifier that can produce 30,000 gallons of water per day and sells for $115,000.
It folds down to just 7 feet by 7 feet, can ship in a regular cargo container and can be delivered by pickup truck or helicopter virtually anywhere it's needed.
"We have this capability, we can produce clean water for drinking and for bathing and for other uses, for less than a penny a gallon," Kelly said.
And there is almost always a need: three Mobile MaxPures are about to head to South Carolina to help the area recover from recent flooding.