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Innovation designed to improve sanitation: Africa's first female urinal

Vaal University of Technology Southern Gauteng Science and Technology Park's Design and Product Development Department is involved in the design and development of a new 'Waterless Female Urinal', which is the brainchild of Orion Herman. Herman is from Johannesburg, Florida and is currently studying his MBA in Green Economy with GIBS Business School.

This is the first female urinal to be launched in Africa; it saves 100% of water, has various fragrances and is designed to avoid infections. Herman stated that people urinate 75% of the time and he recycles about 1 700 litres of urine from outdoor events and malls. He, in turn, creates fertilisers which help enrich the soil from all the recycled urine; 500 litres of urine converts to 1 kilogram of urine fertiliser. This project is sponsored by the London-based banking corporation, JP Morgan.

In September, the VUT SGSTP PR and Industrial Design team attended a media briefing in Johannesburg, Florida to explain the design process of the urinal and demonstrate how it will be used. This urinal is specifically designed to be used in areas where there is no form of sanitation available. "Oftentimes, women have difficulties when they have to use the loo in such areas, and this urinal provides a solution for that," said Herman. The VUT SGSTP Industrial Design team specifically designed the urinal prototype with the concept of making it look feminine and female friendly.

In his research, Herman works with the University of KwaZulu-Natal, University of Johannesburg and the Vaal University of Technology Chemical Engineering Department, with the assistance of Tumi Seodigeng and Joe Walker from Resolution Circle, which crystilises fertilisers and processed urine.

Herman is one of the top eight finalists of The Green City Startup and collaboration with Resolution Circle. This product is created for both social and commercial space.

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