Video: Innovative technology to instantly detect pathogens in water and immediately alert people in affected areas

March 24, 2014

Imagine having the power to instantly detect pathogens such as E. coli in water—and to let everyone in the area know within minutes.

This innovative process is already being tested in India, and in Canada's North, with successful results thanks to game-changing work led by Sushanta Mitra in the U of A's Department of Mechanical Engineering.

It's all part of a $30-million collaboration with India and the universities of Toronto and British Columbia called IC-IMPACTS to ensure health, safety and sustainability for remote and rural communities in Canada and India.

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The U of A has taken the lead on research devoted to safer drinking water. In India, more than 37 million people are struck by diseases coming from contaminated water, and in 2005 Canada's public health agency reported more than 4,000 cases of giardiasis, a parasitic, that can be fatal for young children and seniors.

Explore further: UAlberta technology set to tackle global water challenges

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