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Talia Radford about Her Portable Water Purifier

Industrial designer, Talia Radford’s AquaIris became a big subject in the design world. AquaIris is a portable water purifier made for tropical climates; it has a cool design and works without electricity! Here’s the interview with her about her and the AquaIris.



The Interview

1. How long did you work with the AquaIris, before you came up with a solution for purifying water in tropical climates?

The general project title was THIRST, which was the platform from which the research phase started: statistics, objects, ethnology, all related to this word. I also looked into water purifying techniques in personal and mass production, from the home to the car factories. The decision to focus on finding a solution for purifying water in regions found within the tropics arose from the research. The whole process, from research to end model, took 4 months. AquaIris is my Masters project at the University of Applied Arts
in Vienna.

2. Was it difficult making the AquaIris a water filter that doesn't use electricity?

The focus was to make a tool that would empower people - a tool that would allow people to drink safe and clean water, independent of energy sources or infrastructure. Industrial Design is becoming ever-increasingly interdisciplinary, and by this I mean that it should and will serve as the creative fuel to inspire scientific research, likewise we ID´s will keep our senses alert to the advancements of science and technology and find appropriate applications. Thanks to research in wavelength modulation (long to short) and faith in nano-technology, the concept of converter crystals came about - converter crystals modulate the Sun´s rays to a germicidal UVC frequency.


volume capacity

3. If the AquaIris would develop in the future, how would it change?

If converter crystals become a reality, then I envision them purifying water in larger scale as well as in personal use, taking advantage of the earth´s major source of life - the Sun.

4. Who have influenced you the most in industrial design?

I was lucky to have studied under three proffesors : Borek Sipek, Ross Lovegrove, and Hartmut Esslinger. Each made an impact on my design education, my understanding of ID and the many nooks and crannies it fills. Quite honestly my direct contact to these three fantastic minds and characters, as well as an important small handful of collegues have influenced me most in Industrial Design, and I´m very thankful to everyone.

5. What designs can we see from you in the future?

Currently I am working together with Juan Sebastian Gomez - we have formed a studio, taliaYsebastian. At the moment we are absorbed in structures, OLEDs and energy harvesting.

6. What advice do you have for an aspiring designer?

That´s a strange question! Work hard, read lots of books on varied subjects, enjoy your time, enjoy meeting and conversing and learning from people of every walk of life, travel if you can, be inspired, aspire to make human design and not ego design.

7. Is there anything else you would like to add to this interview?

Thanks for inviting me to the interview!

Talia Radford

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  1. Isobel Jones says:

    What a facinating blog. I've bookmarked it and added your feed to my RSS Reader

  2. He who wills the end wills the means.

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