On the face of it, it’s an odd mix. An industrial Designer who has worked closely with space agency NASA, and the latest innovations in shower design.
But the water-saving next-generation shower made by Orbital Systems is no ordinary appliance. Oas, as the shower is called, is a digital recirculating shower system that claims to be capable of reducing water wastage by 90%, thereby helping the world avoid a water crisis and saving money for regular families.
How? By using the same techniques deployed in space, where resources are not available in abundance and efficiency and recycling are the name of the game. Oas works by continually purififying the same batch of water, analysing it up to 20 times per second and later disposing of the dirty water. Doing so lets it reduce the amount of water used per shower from 20 gallons to 2 gallons.
In other words, with Oas, people can have ten showers for the price of one.
While working with NASA’s Johnson Space Center and Lund University, Mahdjoubi was tasked with finding the necessary water budget to “sustain life in space”, knowing that it would not be possible to consumer water in the same way as on earth. On the Orbital Systems website, the team writes that the success in that project meant that a life that once seemed impossible “was now practical” — prompting Mahdjoubi to look back at Earth.
The designer sets out his desire for the company to go further than saving water during a shower on its website. “Our mission is to create a new paradigm of daily water use — making living with 20 litres or 5 gallons of water a day the new norm.
“We started with the shower, as it’s the biggest water waster. The next step is to apply this water-saving recirculation technology, to the tap, toilet and appliances like the laundry machine in order to enable a complete eco-bathroom solution.”
Orbital Systems has been backed by the European Union’s Investment Bank, to the tune of 15 million euros, to help it scale up manufacturing.