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Not many companies can take pride in their origin in humanitarian efforts to address resource scarcity, but HANS Premium Water can.

HANS Premium Water is a company inspired by the idea of providing water to communities struggling with water insecurity, and it has remained committed to its original mission. It was founded by Manoj Bhargava, who is also the founder and CEO of Innovation Ventures LLC, the company responsible for a household name in quick energy solutions: 5-hour ENERGY.

A girl filling up a container with cleaned water from the RainMaker.

Bhargava leads Billions in Change, which develops and delivers inventions that help communities in need obtain such basics as clean water, reliable electricity, and food. Billions in Change encompasses Stage 2 (an invention shop in Michigan), The HANS Foundation USA, and The HANS Foundation, an organization founded in 2009 that aims to provide energy, water, and health resources to communities in India that are lacking all three. Bhargava employs a zero-profit business model and is using 99 percent of his wealth to advance innovative technologies and implement their adoption.

“If you have wealth,” he said, “then it’s a duty to help those who are less privileged.”

Self-sufficiency is a major long-term goal that Billions in Change supports through the funding of hundreds of projects that aim to give communities in need tools to minimize their reliance on outside help. Rather than give money directly, the organization wants to help communities enable their own wellness and livelihood while developing lasting solutions to the world’s biggest problems.

In other words, rather than take short-term charitable action, Billions in Change wants to enable lasting solutions for the 12 million people across 300 districts in India who have already benefited from the foundation’s initiatives—more than 400 projects so far.

Bhargava amplifies the global impact of innovation projects in his invention shop named Stage 2 and located in Farmington Hills, Michigan. The campus develops projects that advance clean water, energy, and health goals for communities worldwide. And that’s where HANS’s first water-treatment prototype, the RainMaker, emerged.

The RainMaker is a water-treatment device that provides clean drinking water to underserved Indian villages. Since a continued maintenance presence was not feasible, the system was built with simplicity to ensure it could be maintained by those who live in the village.

As the prototypes and subsequent revisions were rolled out to meet the urgent water needs of villages in India, the innovative designs of the RainMaker were brought back to the United States in a commercialized capacity, which is where HANS Premium Water is now focusing.

About

HANS Premium Water products are used in the commercial, industrial, and agricultural sectors for such applications as reverse osmosis (RO), pre- and post-water treatment, and redundant pump modules that can range in design based on the needs of the industry or person. The RO module is the first and only International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Official R&T-certified high-capacity RO system that meets U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards for the removal of contaminants.

HANS point-of-entry purification systems give the security of drinking the safest water possible, not only for families but also across an array of settings that can span office buildings, commercial spaces, and even food and beverage manufacturing facilities. The HANS guarantee is to provide excellence in water quality by removing impurities like dirt, chlorine, and odors, as well as hazardous contaminants like lead, arsenic, PFAS, bacteria, and viruses. The HANS water purification technology is used in a range of industries, such as agriculture, health care, data centers, and livestock management.

Rick Cunningham, chief commercial officer, shared insight into the operations of the company’s filtration system and its applications.

Innovations and Philosophy

One of the standout features of HANS products is their modularity, designed by a team of dedicated engineers. The HANS production plant is located just outside of Detroit, Michigan, and the team utilizes the “automotive philosophy”  approach to designing its products to be easily operational. Rather than stick to the industry’s  historical use of manual valves, HANS has opted for solutions that utilize electronics, software, and digital applications to make operations easier for customers and service operators alike.

The interior of HANS RO models is designed to give a completely customizable experience, with attached and internal operations entirely dependent on specific needs. The exterior unit may look the same, but the filtration inside can vary between several systems needed in a place of business or a household, including the following:

  • Reverse osmosis system.
  • Carbon filter.
  • Sediment filter.
  • Iron and arsenic filter.
  • Water softener.

No matter what the needs of the location are, the solutions are housed in a sleek blue housing unit.

Cunningham explained that modular design is essential to providing individualized service. “The advantage is that it gives folks the flexibility in how it gets installed,” he said. “Because we’re so modular, we can make many different kinds of configurations to fit many different physical environments.”

The modular design enables organizations to easily expand without replacing existing systems and upgrading to a larger version. And the choice of modularity allows HANS to continue to integrate further advancements into existing units instead of continually releasing new products. As other companies might make complex modifications to their products, HANS ensures consistency by making sure its technologies can build one upon the other, unlike with other products that become obsolete.

Collaborations

Continuing on its history of community-supporting projects, HANS will keep prioritizing efforts to bring clean water to water-scarce communities.

Sergio Carranza (left) alongside Rick Cunningham at an installation site.

Cunningham spoke about the recent project that brought HANS water-treatment systems to a community in California’s Coachella Valley, one of the largest agricultural centers in the world.

HANS collaborated with the Pueblo Unido Community Development Corporation, a not-for-profit that serves the needs of the rural communities of the Eastern Coachella Valley. Cunningham explained the agricultural region’s difficulties: If clean water is not delivered from the municipal water district, then farmers and their families must dig wells in areas where the water is laden with arsenic and other contaminants.

He discussed the struggles that the families living in these conditions have, how the effort to bring water to them has been a back-and-forth process with the local government, and that normal filtration systems would not suffice due to the need to minimize wastewater in areas where water is so scarce. But with the inclusion of HANS’s point-of-entry water systems, the recovery rates ensure that these families are staying hydrated with clean and quality water.

“It completely eliminated the need to continue to fight to have water brought out to them,” Cunningham said, “and it’s making them self-sufficient.”

A look inside the new HANS Scientific facilities.

Looking Ahead

As HANS continues to grow, what directions are its innovative engineers planning on approaching next?

Cunningham explained the newest branch of its water services, HANS Scientific. This branch will produce purified water for Water for Injection, which follows heightened requirements, as it is used as a sterile method of delivering medications to patients intravenously. HANS is eager to provide clean and sterile water for the cleaning of medical devices, as well, which has its own set of heightened requirements and parameters for sterility.

HANS Scientific already has found its home alongside its counterparts at the Farmington Hills location, where it will be sure to follow in the steps of its predecessors as another way of providing innovative health solutions through clean and safe water.

About the author

Keller O’Leary is managing editor at Water Conditioning & Purification International Magazine.

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