Invention at Age 14
Lead contamination is a growing global problem, especially in developing nations. Theresa Oei designed an inexpensive filter that uses crushed seashells as the media. The filter is very effective in removing high levels of lead from water contaminated by manufacturing processes and e-waste. The design was based on her investigation into the unique properties of seashells. Seashells are porous nano-structures composed of calcium- carbonate (CaCO3). The removal of lead was optimized by varying the seashell size as well as the salinity and acidity of the water. Samples analyzed by an independent laboratory showed 100% elimination of lead in the contaminated water.