Smart hand pumps promise cleaner water in Africa
Rural communities across Africa may soon benefit from improved water supplies thanks to mobile phone technology.
UK researchers have developed data transmitters that fit inside hand pumps and send text messages if the devices break down.
The "smart" hand pumps will be trialled shortly in 70 villages in Kenya.
Details of the new approach have been published in the Journal of Hydroinformatics.
Hundreds of millions of people across rural Africa depend on hand pumps for their water supplies. But it is estimated that around one third are broken at any given moment. Often located in remote areas, repairs can sometimes take up to a month.
But one of the big changes in Africa in recent years has been the expansion of mobile phone networks. It is now estimated that more people in Sub-Saharan Africa have access to these networks than have access to improved water supplies.