Water purification is something of an obsession with me. I must have at least 6 mechanisms for providing clean drinking water and I still don't think that too many! I've used pretty much every method, from iodine tablets (which leave a pretty nasty taste that is hard to disguise) to chlorine and other chemical solutions (usually chlorine dioxide, which also leaves a pretty nasty taste!), filters (ceramic element, carbon element, activated charcoal and so on), reverse osmosis and even distillation. All of these methods provide clean and mostly sterile water. I say mostly sterile, as only a few of these methods are truly capable of getting rid of any organic matter and there are some rather small life forms on this planet, which tend to be far worst than the largest lifeforms!
But a new mechanism has been added to this collection of methods: UV sterilization! SteriPen, a company based out of the US, now offers several models of portable UV sterilizers for travel and outdoor use. The concept is simple; a handle to hold batteries and a glass shrouded UV lamp on a rubber stopper that is inserted directly into the hole in a standard water bottle. A press of the button initiates a timed session and the UV lamp is turned on, while swirling the water around, insuring sufficient dwell time for the entire volume of water. And presto, the water is ready to drink, with no waiting!
The model we picked up is the Journey LCD, which offers the simplicity of an icon driven operation through an LCD display on the handle of the device.
Simply pick your mode, insert into water supply, agitate and follow the timer on the screen. Couldn't be any easier and with two special detection pins, if for some reason the water is not in contact with the sterilizer, the process is interrupted and the result is displayed on the LCD.
A great addition to my little collection! If you are heading on a trip to a location with doubtful water, this might be a great tool for you.