Turning sweat into drinking water for Unicef

Unicef Sweden is using a “Sweat Machine” to help raise awareness and funds for drinking water projects.

Visitors at the Gothia Cup youth soccer tournament in Gothenburg in July handed in their sweaty shirt after a workout on an exercise bike and got a cup of clean drinking water in return.

For every kilometer cycled and glass of purified water that was drunk, sponsors Apothek Hjärtat (a pharmacy chain) and the Swedish Postcode Lottery donated money to Unicef.

Photo: Deportivo / Unicef

The #sweatforwater campaign concept was developed by advertising agency Deportivo together with Unicef. They teamed up with engineer and TV tech show host Andreas Hammar, who used washing machine parts, a coffee percolator, and a high-tech membrane filter, supplied by HVR Water Purification, to create the “Sweat Machine”.

The machine can produce about 10 ml of clean water from one sweaty shirt but there are no plans to mass produce it. HVR does intend, though to launch a multiple-household water treatment unit in 2014.

Web sites:


  • Machine turns sweat into drinking water for Unicef, BBC, 18 Jul 2013
  • Världens första svettmaskin ger rent vatten till barn, Unicef Sweden, 15 Jul 2013
  • Jesse Emspak, Save water: drink your own sweat, Discovery News, 17 Jul 2013 ;
  • Sweat Machine turns perspiration into drinking water, MSN News, 24 Jul 2013



One response to “Turning sweat into drinking water for Unicef

  1. This is really a good idea. But I think a man who knows it comes from the sweat, s/he won’t drink it. It’s not about water quality, but the resistance from psychology.

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