Potters Without Borders

Ceramic Pot Filters treat water borne disease.

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Filter setter project timeline

Filter setter project timeline

Version 1: Pan ring – Currently in use in some factories manufacturing round bottom filters. – Round bottom filters nest deeply allowing for denser stacking. – Hand pressed into molds. – Variation, using pieces of cut rejected filters. – Weight is distributed onto filter rims in 3 point compression. – Weight of stacked filters is distributed in compression cumu...
Setters update.

Setters update.

Here is an update on the filter setters project. Our first problem was that of alignment. This is something that we struggle with in designing appropriate technology pressing equipment. Finding a cheap and simple mechanism to keep the two halves of the mold aligned throughout the pressing cycle. In the case of the filter setter press, the pressures are not extreme, I wish we could figure out how...
Particle Size Distribution Analysis for Ceramic Pot Water filter production

Particle Size Distribution Analysis for Ceramic Pot Water filter production

Maria del Mar Duocastella and Kai Morrill Potters Without Borders, Enderby, British Columbia, Canada – September 2012 Abstract: To develop a standard Particle Distribution Analysis testing protocol for use in Ceramic Pot Water Filter factories. Introduction: Ceramic Pot Water filters are generally manufactured from sources of raw clay that vary in their consistency, some factories have begun...
Criteria Report for Household Water Treatment Solutions

Criteria Report for Household Water Treatment Solutions

When are ceramic water filters appropriate? Community Choices Tool for Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Pacific Institute Household Water Treatment Solutions Criteria Report Criteria Used for Ranking Household Water Treatment Solutions Below you can view information that clarifies how your individual answers to the questions impacted the Community Choices Tool’s recommendations for technologie...
Problems with Mold Release

Problems with Mold Release

Ceramic water filters are typically cast-formed utilizing aluminum, steel or sometimes concrete molds. The wet mix or charge is placed in or over the molds and the male and female are forced together under pressure to form the shape. Two plastic bags on the inside and outside of the form act as separators that allow the new filter to be easily and cleanly released from the molds. Since developi...
Material input variables

Material input variables

Fine Vs. Coarse sawdust What is the relationship between fine and coarse sawdust on filter strength?   1. Compare filters of gradually increasing amounts of fine, and then coarse, sawdust. Compare strength of filters of similar flow rate. 2. Refire low flow rate filters to attempt to equalize the flow rates, then Compare strength of filters of similar flow rate. (Hypothesis is that firing for...
Development of appropriate mixers

Development of appropriate mixers

Developing appropriate processing mixers, pug mills , or hybrid machines for ceramic water filter factories. Ceramic pot filters that produce potable water are made from a mixture of clay and combustible materials, usually sawdust or rice husk. Both the clay and the combustible are crushed and screened, dry blended, and then wet mixed before forming. Factories employ simple paddle mixers and in so...
Affordable presence absence testing

Affordable presence absence testing

Fired filters are currently being assessed by factories using three tests. Filters are dunk tested to identify cracks that allow water to leak through the filter more quickly. If they pass that test they are then soaked and flow tested. After flow testing, water from some filters may be challenge tested to see if they actually remove bact...
Pug Mills Increase the Strength of Filters

Pug Mills Increase the Strength of Filters

Derek Chitwood wrote… “Pug mills really do increase the strength of our filters. At our facility in Yunnan China, we did an experiment where we made 12 blocks as we usually do (banging them on the floor) and each weighing 8.6kg (as usual). In the next set of 12 we added 0.2kg to each block (8.8 kg) thinking that the extra material would cause extra compression – and work like a pug mill in...
Kiln Setting

Kiln Setting

Here we are in the workshop doing more work on the computer than on the workbench, but its nice to have the specs to share. There has been some work done on designing a special kiln setting to fit more filters into a kiln-load. The ones in the photos below have been made with the same mix as the filter-body. They are functional, but we wanted to see if we could make them less massive without loosi...
GTZ Yemen Ceramic Water Filter Flow Test Results

GTZ Yemen Ceramic Water Filter Flow Test Results

GTZ Yemen Ceramic Water Filter Flow Test Results Summary 6 -#1 Mix Filters 2.33 liters/hour average 10 – #2 Mix filters all more then 3.5 liters per hour 9- # 3 Mix Filters- All more then 3.5 liters/hour 1-#4 Mix Filter- More then 3.5 liters per hour No # 5 Mix filters survived the forming process –due to fragility 4 -#6filters- All more then 3.5 liters/hour Total Filters Flow Tested-30 Fi...
April 28th 2007 filter firing Yemen GTZ

April 28th 2007 filter firing Yemen GTZ

Time Description Door Bottom Door Top Chimney Side Kiln On 4 corner burners :30 60 93 122 1:00 Damper at 10 cm 69 93 128 1:22 6 burners (2 more near to the door) 1:30 Damper @ 15 cm 93 118 156 2:05 111 133 170 3:06 173 195 248 3:35 Smoke beginning to generate from filters 187 209 265 3:40...
Pororsity Tests

Pororsity Tests

Pororsity Tests*-150 to 200 gram Sections of fired filters were cut out of the lip, weighed, soaked for 24 hours and then re-weighed to evaluate. Ceramic Water Filter Test Batch No. 1 Thursday January 18, 2007 Pororsity Test*- 38.8% ****** Ceramic Water Filter Test Batch No. 2 Saturday January 20th, 2007 Pororsity Test*- 32.2% Mix Proportion represents 10% less sawdust than mix No. 1 ****** Cerami...
Finished filters

Finished filters

Opening the kiln: The charcoal remains indicates that the firing was under done and/or the filters need to have a spacer between them. Too tightly packed. The one sucessful filter soaking in water for 24 hours will be ready for flow-rate testing:   ...
Ceramic Water Filter Series Batch Tests Firing

Ceramic Water Filter Series Batch Tests Firing

Feb 8th, 2007 20 filters in firing – Target temperature 890 C. Gas firing Kiln On  — 1 Burner 1:00 187 C 2 Burners 2:06 277 C 4 Burners 3:20 523 C 6 Burners 4:00 544 C 4:58 560 C 5:40 682 C 6:06 707 C 6:38 805 C 7:12 850 C 7:21 861 C 7:40 89...
Ceramic Water Filter Series Batch Tests

Ceramic Water Filter Series Batch Tests

Ceramic Water Filter Test Batch No. 1 Thursday January 18, 2007 Mix Proportions @ approximately 50-50 by volume Plainsman Red Earth Clay 44lbs. (20 KG) 86.3% Screened Sawdust 7lbs. (3.18 KG) 13.7% Water 21 lbs 11.5 oz. (62.31 lbs total mix used for 4 filters or 15.58 lbs per filter) Clay and Sawdust were placed in mixer a...
Second batch of filters

Second batch of filters

The second batch of filters made by Seattle University students on January 20, 2007. From left to right are 1/20/07-2, 1/20/07-1, 1/20/07-3, 1/20/07-4 ...
Ceramic Water Filters – Batch Proportions

Ceramic Water Filters – Batch Proportions

The first four filters from the PWB filter press. All produced using 50-50 mix of clay and sawdust. From left to right are, numbers: 1/18/07-4, 1/18/07-1, 1/18/07-2, 1/18/07-3. Details as follows: PWB Filter Batch Tests: Ceramic Water Filter Test Batch No. 1 Thursday January 18, 2007 Mix Proportions @ approximately 50-50 by volume Plainsman Red Earth Clay 44lbs. Screened Sawdust 7lbs. Water 21 l...

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