A Simple Machine To Quench The Thirst For Clean Water: Suprio Das at TEDxGateway

After working for more than 20 years as an electrical engineer with different business houses, Suprio realized that life could be more meaningful and interesting than this scramble up the corporate ladder. He gave up his job and started his own business while volunteering with an NGO in villages around Kolkata. On regularly visiting the villages, it occurred to him that social work and engineering could be combined together to develop devices that could help the poor.

The various enterprises that he had started — ranging from being a tourist guide, a professional driver, running a courier company – all fortunately failed for some reason or the other, allowing him more time to work on low cost technologies for the under-served communities. The simple devices that he started designing brought him in touch with D-Lab at MIT and in addition to being invited 4 consecutive times to the International Development Design Summit (organized by MIT) at Boston, Ghana and Colorado. He was also invited as Designer-in-Residence at MIT to work with and mentor students of D-Lab on development design.

His latest project Zimba the automatic chlorine doser, was selected by researchers of Stanford University and icddr-b for trials in the slums of Dhaka. These dosers are in operation since February 2012 and are currently serving around 50 families. A single device is also under pilot trial with Spring Health (a Paul Polak initiative) in Orissa.

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