NPO Deep Springs International is partnering with the Nokia Research Center in Palo Alto, Calif. to ensure the supply of clean drinking water in Haiti with NFC technology.
In order to track chlorine levels in household drinking water, the partners are distributing water treatment kits with NFC technology to families in the most rural parts of Haiti. The kits consist of a five-gallon plastic bucket with a lid and spigot. BullsEye NFC tags from UPM RFID are attached to buckets, allowing DSI’s water technicians to track water quality and chlorine content using Nokia 6212 NFC-enabled cell phones.
DSI says their chlorine tracking solution is helping curb the cholera outbreak following the devastating earthquake in January of last year.
The organization reports reduced incidence of diarrhea among users by about 50%. So far the organization has reached 35,000 families throughout Haiti.
Joseph Kaye, senior research scientist at NRC, initiated the project together with David Holstius, a Ph.D. candidate at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health and developer of the software application for mobile phones.
“After a catastrophe, it’s critical to get quickly organized while saving time and resources to protect citizens’ health. NFC technology is a fast and cost-effective way of shoring up or totally taking over maintenance functions in post-catastrophe environments left with a fragile or
non-existent infrastructure. From the system point of view, it doesn’t need significant investment or overly complicated processes. Simple control, track and trace functions can be created rather easily between an NFC phone and RFID tag, sometimes even without network support”, says Mikko Nikkanen, business development director of UPM RFID.