In order to inexpensively and affectively clean the water, UB professor James Jensen, and his civil, structural and environmental engineering students constructed a “6-foot-tall, self-sustaining magnifying glass” called a water lens.
Students, including Deshawn Henry (photos), a sophomore civil engineering major, managed to design the oversized magnifying glass using commonly found materials. The idea is to concentrate the sun’s rays in order to “heat a liter of water to between 130 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit in a little more than an hour, destroying 99.9 percent of bacteria and pathogens.”
Now the invention is receiving international acclaim due to its ability to offer solutions to some of the world’s water crisis problems (1.1 billion people lack access to clean drinking water). Being featured on CBS will help to escalate the work of Jensen and his students. “It’s been heartening to represent UB in such a positive way,” says Jensen. “I hope these ‘15 minutes of fame’ help shine a light on an important global health problem and the work done at UB to help others.”
*The UB segment is slated to air at 10 a.m. Feb. 7 on local affiliate WIVB-TV. The show is hosted by CBS News correspondent Mo Rocca and produced with the Henry Ford Museum.