The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has issued a request for letters of inquiry for disbursing a set of new grants to support its Reinventing the Toilet Challenge (Round 2) under its Water, Sanitation & Hygiene Program. These grants are intended for exceptionally highly-qualified research groups interested in contributing to major advances in sanitation and hygiene in the developing world.
The Reinvent the Toilet Challenge is designed to prototype a means of dealing effectively and cost-efficiently with human waste for the 2 billion people on earth who currently lack access to safe and affordable sanitation.
Successful applicants will participate in the next phase of the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge: designing, prototyping and testing entirely stand-alone, self-contained, practical sanitation modules which intake bodily wastes and swiftly dispose of them without any incoming water piping, outgoing sewer piping or electric or gas utility services. These modules must intake all outputs of the serviced population – ultimately at single-residence scales – with minimal module footprints and assured biosafety. Thus, chemical and mechanical engineering approaches are preferred.
At present, the Foundation is soliciting letters of inquiry and capability declarations from groups, primarily in the academic sector and from for-profit organizations, who are well qualified to undertake R&D and execute pertinent program plans. Full proposals for grant awards are not being solicited at the present, but submission of proposals may be invited in the near future from those whose letters of inquiry and capability declarations are of extraordinary quality.
A single-page typed-or-printed letter of inquiry and capability declaration should be submitted no later than May 10th 2012 in order to be assured of consideration.
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