Taiwan startup Mbran Filtra wins International Innovation Award for world's smallest water filter

1 min read

Taiwanese start-up Mbran Filtra, has been recognised as a 2022 CES Innovation Award Honoree for its world's smallest water filter. With the pandemic's end still nowhere in sight, outdoor activities such as hiking and camping have exploded in popularity, and now adventure seekers have a revolutionary product to help them access potable water anywhere. The start-up will be showcasing its technology at 2022 CES.

"Mbran Filtra's water filter is just the size of a person's thumb and weighs just 21 grams, allowing it to slip into any pocket and be used in a myriad of activities such as trail runs, mountain biking, hiking, camping, or any kind of travel exploration. It allows anyone access to safe drinking water virtually anywhere," says Dr. Hsu-Hsien Chang, CEO of Mbran Filtra.

Small footprint, big features
Mbran Filtra's water filter blocks out bacteria, microorganisms, and microplastics, which is considered a necessity for any filter and it can be used without any electricity, making it very convenient for traveling. And finally, it has a high flow rate of 1.2 liters per minute, giving its users plenty of drinking water in a fast and efficient manner. 

Unique process
The innovation of this product lies in the manufacturing process, which Mbran Filtra says utilizes polyethersulfone polymer while building multifunctional properties or layers into the pore structure of the hollow fiber membrane. The membrane itself is available in different sizes (0.04 - 0.4 um), allowing it to be used in various applications. 

Another unique feature is the filter's highly asymmetric pore structure. Compared to traditional filters with symmetric membranes, this design offers a higher dirt loading capacity, providing better filtration performance and higher flow rates. 

With this design, the portable filter has been proven to block out bacteria such as E. Coli with up to 99.9% effectiveness, reducing the colony forming unit (CFU) levels per 100 milliliters from 5700 to less than 1 in a E.Coli test conducted by one of the world's leading testing and certification companies SGS. 

The thumb-sized filter also has a total filtration capacity of up to 1,000 liters depending on water quality, giving its users a durable and reliable portable filter which they can use for a long time.

An eye towards sustainability
Aside from class-leading features, the portable filter also adheres to Mbran Filtra's commitment to sustainable manufacturing. It uses environmentally friendly solvents, non-toxic materials, and green manufacturing processes. The filter's long-life cycle also ensures that it has the least impact possible to the environment, and its indirect effect of reducing the use of bottled water means it's a product that boosts sustainability efforts.