Run by Eliza Becton and co-founders Sean Grundy and Frank Lee, Refresh Water Technologies is a startup formed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology to develop the eco-friendly vending machine Refresh.
Refresh is a water vending machine that filters and bottles water from the tap on-site instead of carrying pre-filled bottles that come from a bottling plant.
The vending machine uses a collapsible, reusable nylon and polyurethane container — which means it can hold up to 1,000 bottles in a single machine, unlike standard machines that can hold about 200. This cuts down on the number of times the machine needs to be refilled, translating to savings on gas and time for the vendors.
Refresh also uses less energy because it doesn’t need to refrigerate several full bottles of water. It only cools what’s needed.
According to the founders, the Refresh machine cuts vending costs by 20% and has a carbon footprint that’s 80% less than the standard water dispenser.
According to a post on Co.Exist, the startup is working on a beta version of the machine and a new version of the bottle. They are looking to roll out the product around Boston this year.
Header Image: JLM Photography