Scientists at University of Leeds have developed a new washing machine named Xeros that carries out a full wash using only one cup of water, leaving clothes virtually dry.
The Xeros technology, developed by Professor Stephen Burkinshaw, enables massive savings to be made in the amount of water and energy consumed during the washing, scouring, dyeing and printing of textiles. It uses less than 2 per cent of the water and energy of a conventional machine.
According to statistics an average household uses about 20 litres of water daily washing clothes.
The washing machine uses thousands of tiny plastic chips – each about half a centimeter in size – to absorb and remove dirt.
The water is heated during the washing cycle to help dissolve dirt which is then picked up by the chips. The chips can be used up to 100 times which equals around six months of washing for many people. About 20kg of the chips are added to each load along with a cup of water and detergent.
According to Professor Burkinshaw:
We’ve shown that it can remove all sorts of everyday stains including coffee and lipstick whilst using a tiny fraction of the water used by conventional washing machines.
The machine could be available as soon as next year and is expected to be competitively priced.