NEW DELHI

Towards greener vistas at IIT Delhi

Parul Sharma

Institute is going to set up new facility on its campus



The project is being developed in partnership with the Vigyan Vijay Foundation

‘Toilets can also be modified to urine diversion toilets for harvesting urine’



NEW DELHI: Underscoring the need for using urine as a resource, Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi is going to set up a “green urinal” on its campus by this month-end.

The design is ready and once the Administration gives its sanction, a pilot test facility of the “green urinal” will be set up at the micro-model complex on the campus.

A team led by Vijayaraghavan M. Chariar, Assistant Professor at the Centre for Rural Development and Technology at IIT Delhi, is working on the project.

The project is being developed in partnership with the Vigyan Vijay Foundation and is supported by UNICEF and Stockholm Environment Institute. “Rapid urbanisation and population growth pose a huge challenge in terms of water use, water treatment and disposal. The new direction in sanitation is to reuse precious nutrient resources present in human waste. Human urine which contains 70 per cent nitrogen, 50 per cent phosphorus and 50 per cent of potassium of the total nutrients present in all forms of household waste can replace chemical fertilisers,” explained Prof. Chariar.

The team is trying to install a waterless urinal for the “green urinal” facility. Such urinals do not use water for flushing urine and are kept clean by minimal wiping and use of odour traps and biological blocks.

“Waterless urinals are being used in a big way in Europe. Toilets can also be modified to urine diversion toilets for harvesting urine. Harvested urine can be re-used for agricultural or industrial purposes,” he pointed out. The “green urinal” will be established on a raised platform, where a tank will collect the urine that will then be used for watering plants, flowerbed and hedge to come up near it.“Urine can be used as a fertilizer, industrial feedstock, and it provides clean energy. Urine combined with bio-mass speeds up composting. With such uses, it becomes mandatory to segregate urine from faecal matter. We are trying to speak with architects and planners to bring about a change at the policy level so that every new building has a mechanism to separate urine from other human waste,” Prof. Chariar explained.

His team is also making efforts to design a special women’s urinal in India.

“A Delhi University student is conducting a survey for us on women’s preferences in using a urinal. The design should be ready in the next four months,” he added.

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