Students at MIT have engineered and built a prototype of a washing machine they believe to have significant impact in slums and other poor places around the world that have no easy access to water. The washing machine is built out of a standard drum barrel (shortened) and the rotating inner drum is made from identical plastic plates bolted together.

The plates are then pedal-driven by a rider sitting on a modified bicycle with chains going from the crank to the side of the barrel. Although the prototype was not a perfect success — there was water leakage on the barrel — the students think that a modified version can be made relatively quickly for the next round of testing.

As for the name ‘Bicilavadora’, it’s a combination of the Spanish word for bicycle and washing machine.