Chinese scientists have developed a toilet using 3D-printing technology that prevents feces from leaving skid marks on the bowl.
Key details: A group of scientists from the Huazhong University of Science and Technology in Wuhan presented their study published in the journal Advanced Engineering Materials on Aug. 5.
About the study: The toilet, which the scientists called the “abrasion-resistant super-slippery flush toilet (ARSFT),” was created using selective laser sintering 3D-printing technology and a combination of plastic and hydrophobic sand grains injected with silicon-based oil.
Surprising result: Huazhong University’s Yike Li and the research team found that their 3D-printed toilet, which is 10 times smaller than the average toilet, was effective against sticky material like synthetic feces created using yeast, peanut oil, water and miso. Upon contact with the ARSFT, the synthetic feces immediately slid down the bowl without leaving any marks behind.
Besides synthetic feces, the group tested muddy water, rice porridge, milk, honey and starch-filled gel.
Resistant to damage: The scientists also showed that the ARSFT is resistant to damage, noting that even after subjecting it to 1,000 cycles of abrasion using sandpaper and a Stanley knife, the 3D-printed toilet bowl still managed to maintain “its record-breaking super-slippery capability.”
Its benefits: Li noted that this invention — if successfully adapted to a cheaper, full-size version — could help combat the planet’s water waste issue that involves flushing, which consumes 141 billion liters of water per day globally.