P13411: High Temperature Waste Pasteurizer


Project Summary Project Information

For the original project description, click on the following link for the Project Readiness Package.

Project Description

Project Background:

The long term goal of this project is to develop an inexpensive waste pasteurizer that will allow households of three to five people in underdeveloped countries, specifically Haiti, to safely use their waste as a free fertilizer for home gardens and crops. The method of pasteurization that will be used is to heat the waste to a high temperature using renewable and cheap energy for a set amount of time to kill the pathogens contained within. There are several similar past projects including water pasteurization and various solar cookers that ideas will be drawn from.

Problem Statement:

The primary objective of this project is to transform human waste into a safe to use fertilizer using renewable energy. The waste pasteurizer must be made of materials available in Haiti and be easy to use.


1. Reach a temperature and maintain it for the required amount of time to eliminate pathogens contained in human waste.

2. Contain and dispose of unwanted outputs of pasteurizer including pathogens and combustible gas.

3. Use resources available to a third world country, specifically Haiti.


  • A device that collects solar energy and transfers it to a contained substance to heat it uniformly and safely.
  • Collected data that shows that a prototype is able to reach an adequate temperature and maintain it for the required amount of time.

Expected Project Benefits:

  • Development of a technology that can provide an improved lifestyle to those in underdeveloped countries.
  • Further understanding of passive solar power
  • Basis for future senior design projects.

Strategy & Approach

Assumptions & Constraints:

Assumptions made include that the waste entered into the pasteurizer is a uniform consistency, that the weather in Haiti is conducive to collecting solar energy and that users of the final product will be able to empty and re-fill the contents on a regular basis. As the project continues into later stages many more assumptions will be made.

Some major constraints are the issue of cost and use of available materials. The developed device must cost under $50 and it is preferred that only materials available in Haiti are used.

Issues & Risks: Foreseen Issues fall into several different categories:

  • Customer Needs
    • Necessary materials needed to meet the specifications not available in Haiti.
    • Unable to keep manufactured price under $50 USD and meet temperature specifications.
  • Potential Dangers
    • Containment chamber heats to a temperature that causes harm to users.
    • Unexpected (untested) components are present in waste and it is unable to be fully pasteurized.
  • Design Features
    • Temperature sensors do not work in environment or incorrect readings are gathered.
    • Not enough energy can be converted to heat.
    • Seals of containment chamber are inadequate or degrade over time.
Isometric View

Isometric View

Prototype Photo

Prototype Photo

public/Photo Gallery/sponsor.jpg
Project Name
High Temperature Waste Pasteurizer
Project Number
Project Family
Sustainable Systems
Start Term
End Term
Faculty Guide
John Kaemmerlen
Primary Customer
Alex Martinez
Julianna Wendt
Sarah Brownell
Sponsor (financial support)
Mark Smith

Team Members

Member Role Contact
Kyle Cohn Mechanical Engineer kmc3596@rit.edu
Brian Kilger Mechanical Engineer bjk5782@rit.edu
Stephanie Mauro Mechanical Engineer slm3355@rit.edu
Kyle Weston Industrial Engineer kew5140@rit.edu
From Left to Right:Kyle Cohn, Stephanie Mauro, Brian Kilger (Front), Kyle Weston (Back)

From Left to Right:Kyle Cohn, Stephanie Mauro, Brian Kilger (Front), Kyle Weston (Back)

Table of Contents


Photo Gallery

Planning & Execution

Systems Design

Detailed Design

Photo Gallery

Planning & Execution

Build, Test, Document

Final Presentation

Technical Paper



The design team would like to express their gratitude to all of the people who helped to complete this project. We would like to thank our project guide John Kaemmerlen and our primary project customer Sarah Brownell for their guidance throughout the duration of the project. We would also like to thank Dr. Brian Thorn, Carl Lundgren, and Dave Hathaway for their assistance in the building and testing procedures of the device. Lastly, the team would like to thank the Multi-Disciplinary Senior Design program for their funding and support.