Tested: SteriPEN Quantum Rapid Purification System

By Justin Walker 20 December 2019
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It is the most important thing to ‘get right’ when you’re out exploring remote areas: water purification. If there’s anything that can have a dramatic, and often dangerous, impact on your adventure it is drinking contaminated water. And really, it is a simple thing to avoid, provided your purification system works.

SteriPEN has been in the business of keeping adventurers (and remote communities) healthy for many years, with its numerous water purification products all highly regarded around the world. The US-based company offers a very unique water cleansing system, dubbed the Quantum Rapid Purification System. And system it is indeed; the Quantum comprises a UV purifier, a 1 Litre (L) measure cup, a 40-micron filter, and the unique RapidUV reservoir, in a 4L capacity. The unit is powered by four AA batteries, with Alkaline offering 50 x 1L treatments: Lithium disposable 150 x 1L; and NiMH 100 x 1L treatments. The lamp on the UV purifier is rated to 3000 treatments, which equates to 12,000 litres when you take into account the 4L reservoir. SteriPEN also claims the treatment only takes 150 seconds for the full 4L – that’s impressive.

The Quantum Rapid Purification system packs down nice and compact to ensure it doesn’t take up much room in your backpack.

The method is ingenious and, as just stated, fast. Firstly, you insert the filter into the 4L reservoir and then fill the reservoir to capacity. Then you simply insert the UV purifier into the filter and click the purifier and away you go. Once the treatment time is complete, you remove the purifier and filter, close the reservoir lid, and then access the now-treated water via the reservoir tap – or the ‘easy pour spout’ as SteriPEN terms it.

The lamp on the UV purifier is is rated to 3000 treatments and is incredibly easy to use. Simply insert it in the reservoir and 2.5 minutes later you have four litres of purified water.

It sounds too good to be true – especially the speed of the purification; this is achieved via the unique inner coating of reflective material in the 4L bladder. By enhancing – or magnifying – the amount of UV light the lamp emits via reflection, this means more light is ‘hitting’ the water at any given time, thus resulting in such a fast treatment time. It’s ingenious, and even more so when you think just how much 4L is for a solo hiker, and how quickly you could have 10L of treated water – always handy when you need to hydrate, wash, etc.

Dispensing purified water is straightforward with little risk of spilling any precious liquid due to the two handles on the reservoir sides.

Making the process easier is the reservoir’s two robust handles and the wide-mouth purification port – it allows a fast, effective treatment and dispersal of clean water (SteriPEN claims the unit kills 99.9% of bacteria, protozoa and viruses). Impressively, the complete system is compact and light; the 4L reservoir being able to be compressed down flat also means it and the rest of the system take up minimal space in your backpack, making for no excuse not to have this hi-tech water purifying system as one of the first items always loaded in your backpack.

RRP $192.50 www.gearsupply.com.au