With water conservation becoming more and more relevant, the younger generation has also got into the act. Two students have come out with an innovative wastewater discharge system in railway coaches and claim its adoption will cut down the use of water by 75 per cent.

M.I. Rizwan Jamal and S. Arunachalam, final-year students of Mechanical and Production Engineering at Sathyabama University, have named their project ‘Re-engineering of discharge system in Indian railway coaches'.

According to them, one of the major problems the country is facing is water shortage. Hence, it is imperative that water is conserved as much as possible. They point out that a substantial quantum of water is used in rail coaches, and “it is definitely possible to save considerable quantity”.

They came up with an innovative idea and did the project work at the Integral Coach Factory, Perambur, from September 20 to October 15 last year.

The project is to introduce a new chamber on top of the bio-toilet system and have reverse osmosis (RO) filters inside the tanks.

Their project assumes significance in the context of railway authorities' decision to have bio-toilets in coaches. [Former Railways Minister Dinesh Trivedi, while presenting the railway budget, had said that bio-toilets developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation were under extended trial.]

“A major share of water used by passengers is from wash basins. We have attached a new pipe, which connects all three wash basins in each compartment through which water is collected in the RO tank.” The water saved in the tank will be recycled through the process of reverse osmosis and sent to the upper tank where it can be used for flushing.

The coupling of the RO tank with the bio-toilet system will be more beneficial and can make the system very effective, compared to the present duct line system. The students are confident that the project will ensure more eco-friendly railway stations.

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At WorkSeptember 24, 2010