There aren’t many companies that can say they developed an outdoor water purification device specifically for use by the US military … and took six years to be sure they got it right. MSR can make that claim and more with its new Guardian Water Purifier.

Filter systems have generally been constrained by their ability to eliminate only bacteria and Cryptosporidium (a microscopic, diarrhea-causing parasite), but not viruses. Purification systems get rid of viruses, but take longer to do so. What makes the MSR Guardian different is that it acts as both filter and purifier and is claimed to eliminate all biological threats you might find in even the dirtiest of water.

While there are other products out there that combine filtration and purification into a single unit, the Guardian does so without the use of chemicals, batteries, UV light, carbon or pre-filtering ... and it's self-cleaning.

The key is in the system’s hollow-fiber structure made of what the company describes as advanced medical-grade fibers that are woven tight enough to block the smallest microbiological elements. MSR says the hollow fiber structure is undamaged by freezing temperatures and the Guardian can withstand drops from up to six feet onto concrete and up to 300 pounds of force.

The Guardian meets US military testing standard–NSF Protocol P248 and is able to fit on most standard water bottles. It can filter and purify up to 2.5 liters of water per minute and can produce over 10,000 liters of clean water before it’s no longer useful.

The self-cleaning feature sees ten percent of the water that's pumped through the system fed back through the filter through a separate line to flush it clean. So no more hassling with scrubbing cartridges or backflushing to ensure both a steady and clean flow.

The MSR Guardian will be available to the public in January 2016, presenting an attractive option for hikers and backpackers who may no longer have to contend with the expensive and environmentally-unfriendly prospect of buying bottled water. But this kind of advanced, worry-free technology doesn’t come cheap at a list price of US$350.

MSR made the following short film to showcase the Guardian's versatility.

Source: MSR