WaterHealth inventor wins $50K as part of 2004 Tech Museum Awards

Dr. Ashok Gadgil, vice president of scientific affairs of WaterHealth International and senior staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has received The Affymatrix Health Award, which was bestowed as part of the Tech Museum of Innovation's Tech Museum Awards program. The inventor of a UV water treatment device is among five global innovators recognized for work to use technology for the benefit of humanity...

Nov 12th, 2004

SAN JOSE, CA, Nov. 11, 2004 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Dr. Ashok Gadgil, vice president of scientific affairs of WaterHealth International and senior staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has received The Affymatrix Health Award, which was bestowed as part of the Tech Museum of Innovation's Tech Museum Awards program.

Dr. Gadgil is one of five 2004 Tech Museum Award laureates to win $50,000 for their pioneering work. The Tech Museum encourages laureates reinvest their winnings in additional innovative programs that utilize technology to solve global challenges and improve the lives of people around the globe. Applied Materials, Inc. presented Dr. Gadgil's award at a black-tie gala held last night.

"I am greatly honored by this recognition of the enormous potential of UVWaterworks technology to reduce the global health impact of unsafe drinking water. This technology can provide affordable access to safe drinking water for hundreds of millions of people." Dr. Gadgil said.

More than 4 million people, mostly children, die annually from dirty drinking water. A community water system fitted with this award-winning technology can deliver 10 liters of potable water per person, per day to up to 2,000 people, for less than US$2.00 annually per person. Since most of the 1.2 billion people forced to rely on dirty drinking water earn less than a dollar a day, this invention makes safe drinking water affordable to an enormous segment of the world population. Via WaterHealth International, the company that has licensed and is commercializing Dr. Gadgil's technology, more than 200,000 people, mostly in the Philippines and Mexico, already use UVWaterworks to obtain their safe drinking water daily.

"The Tech Awards laureates are pioneering appropriate technology solutions to aid so many people, but it's the ease with which their innovations can be scaled and replicated elsewhere that will continue to truly make this world a better place," said Tech Museum President and CEO Peter Giles. "The ultimate promise of the laureates and their technology is the power these examples have to communicate to every individual who becomes aware of them that they too can make a difference."

The gala, attended by over 1,300 global technology leaders, philanthropists and guests, honored 25 laureates in total, in the categories of environment, economic development, education, equality and health. The laureates traveled to Silicon Valley from the 12 countries they represent for a week of scheduled meetings with potential funders and partners, various speaking engagements, and the black-tie gala.

This year, the Tech Museum received more than 580 nominations, representing 80 countries. The 25 laureates came from Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, Ecuador, Guatemala, India, Nepal, Nigeria, Singapore, The United States and Uruguay. Their work impacts 37 countries. Nominations for the 2005 Tech Museum Awards: Technology Benefiting Humanity are now open. For more information and nomination forms, visit www.techawards.org.

About The Tech Museum Awards
The concept for The Tech Museum Awards and its five categories was inspired in part by The State of the Future at the Millennium report of The Millennium Project of the American Council for the United Nations University, which recommends that award recognition is an effective way to accelerate scientific breakthroughs and technological applications to solve the most critical global challenges. The Awards were inaugurated in 2001.

Judging for The Tech Museum Awards is independently conducted by Santa Clara University's Center for Science, Technology and Society, a global network of academic and industry experts dedicated to understanding and influencing how science and technology impact society. Judges for the five categories are recruited from research institutions, industry and the public sector around the world.

Located in the heart of downtown Silicon Valley in California, The Tech -- a non-profit organization -- engages people of all ages and backgrounds in exploring and experiencing the technologies affecting their lives and aims to inspire the innovator in everyone. For more information, visit www.thetech.org.

About Water Health International
WaterHealth International Inc. (WHI) is a California-based company that secured an exclusive worldwide license to a novel, award-winning technology from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory for the disinfection of water in 1996. Since that time the company has developed several product applications based on this technology platform and has market-tested them in numerous countries; there are currently over 300 installations of UVWaterworks systems worldwide. WHI will soon complete the installation of the first of 10 pilot community water systems in India, and plans to break ground on a series of similar systems in Ghana in early 2005. The company also plans for aggressive growth of its water refilling station businesses in the Philippines in 2005.

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