Hydration Technologies gets $6.3M to provide U.S. military water filtration units

The monies are available starting Oct. 1, 2005, the beginning of the U.S. Government fiscal year, and will allow U.S. military units around the world to obtain HTI water filtration units, including X-Packs, HydroWell Expeditions and HydroWell 24s...

WASHINGTON, DC, Aug. 24, 2004 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- U.S. Senators Wyden and Smith celebrated a $6.3-million funding victory for Oregon start-up Hydration Technologies Inc. (HTI). HTI was authorized the monies with the signing of the 2005 Defense Appropriations Act, cited the senators.

The monies are available starting Oct. 1, 2005, the beginning of the U.S. Government fiscal year, and will allow U.S. military units around the world to obtain HTI water filtration units, including X-Packs, HydroWell Expeditions and HydroWell 24s.

"Passage of this Act equips our soldiers with technology that will allow them to access indigenous water sources when deployed anywhere in the world," says Bob Salter, HTI's President. HTI's water filtration units employ forward osmosis technology, which draws water through HTI's proprietary membrane without water pressure or moving parts, yielding pure drink from even the most turbid water. Army sources indicate that this technology will reduce the logistical footprint of military units, extending their operational duration and capability in remote regions.

"The ability for soldiers to turn almost any water source into drink, especially in an environment like Afghanistan or Iraq, could mean the difference between life and death or mission accomplishment," says SFC Jeff Myhre of the U.S. Army's Program Executive Office Soldier.

Gerry Darsch, director of the Army's Combat Feeding Program in Natick, Massachusetts, calls the technology "literally a lifesaver," which is why soldiers involved in testing have given it their blessing. "Their response has been not only that this is great, but that they want to get it NOW," Darsch says.

Forward osmosis filtration is a relatively new technology commercialized solely by HTI. It is unique to other technologies because forward osmosis works well with almost any source fluid, even if it is very muddy.

"HTI's motto is AnyWater, AnyWhere," says Major General (Ret) and former Task Force 160 Night Stalker Commander, Lou Hennies. "When you consider the fact that water is the single greatest logistics burden any army faces, enabling soldiers to drink water from virtually any indigenous source while on a mission is an enormous force multiplier and gives commanders incredible planning flexibility."

The congressional action, spearheaded by Sen. Gordon Smith, Sen. Ron Wyden and Congresswoman Darlene Hooley, also received bipartisan and multi-state support from Sen. Bill Frist, Sen. James Inhofe, Congressman Jim Saxton, Congressman George Nethercutt and Congressman Norm Dicks.

While HTI's current products are designed for contaminated freshwater sources, the company says it will release a highly sought after saltwater version as well as a chem-bio defense product sometime next year.

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