Backcountry travellers have always had to take special care of their water. In the past we had three ways to make our water safe: filter it, treat the water with chemicals, or boil the water. Recently, a fourth method for removing harmful organisms – bombard the water with ultraviolet radiation. The unit weighs 3.7 ounces (104 grams) and consists of the UV-C light emitting bulb and a screw-on plastic cap that contains the circuitry and two lithuim CR123 batteries.
The AquaStar is designed to work best with 1-quart Nalgene Lexan bottles. While it can mate to other widemouth Nalgene bottles, care needs to be taken to ensure the seal is strong and it may be necessary to agitate the water some to ensure complete exposure. AquaStar claims it only takes about 80 seconds to effectively treat a Nalgene bottle’s worth of water.
The Aquastar Plus is their latest entry into this market and it appears to be well built and as sturdy as any product in this particular class can be. Time will tell if this type of water treatment technology is really a viable option for the ultralight backpacker.
Features and Specifications
- The AquaStar Plus weighs 3.7 ounces (104 g) excluding the provided 1-quart Lexan bottle, but includes batteries.
- Fits neatly into a 1-quart Lexan Nalgene bottle
- Kills bacteria and viruses in about 80 seconds using ultraviolet light
- Two CR123 lithium batteries power the unit and will treat 50 to 70 liters of water.