Toilet News! (it is a slow week)
Automation for keeping toilets clean!
SINGAPORE — Research engineers from the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*Star) have invented a toilet-monitoring system that can signal when toilets need to be cleaned.
The system tracks how heavily restrooms are used, and has a sensor to measure the odor levels of things like ammonia, which is found in urine, and hydrogen sulphide, which is found in feces.
The technology, called the Restroom Visitilizer System, has been on trial in more than 60 public toilets islandwide over the past two years, in places like Marina Bay Sands (MBS), the Singapore Zoo and River Safari.
The system, developed in 2013, has now been licensed to Convergent Smart Technologies, a local small and medium-sized enterprise.
Its director Cedric Hoon said the system has received good reviews from cleaning contractors. It costs about $1,700 to $2,000 to install a set of sensors for two toilets. (seems expensive to me)
Do airplanes ever dump their waste while in flight?
Not intentionally. Airliner toilets use either a “closed waste system,” which works much like a common house toilet and flushes the wastewater into an onboard sewage tank, or the more modern “vacuum waste system,” which sucks wastewater into the tank. While up in the air, the latter is powered by the difference between the air pressure outside the airplane and inside the cabin, and produces a roaring vacuum whenever a passenger activates the flush. (The noise may make it seem like the toilet is flushing your waste out into the atmosphere, but it’s not.) Under normal circumstances, the ground crew disposes of the sewage after the plane lands. Even if the pilot and flight attendants wanted to empty a tank midflight, they couldn’t, as the valve is located on the outside of the plane, and can only be opened by the ground crew.
Have a great day and an even better sales week!