AFTER watching a report on the drought in Somalia, a Stroud inventor was motivated to pioneer a machine that turns seawater into drinking water.

David Binns has been working on the equipment for five years, supported by a team from innovation hub Epicuro.

It relies on the sun as its only power source, using its radiation to distil seawater, brackish water or contaminated water to produce drinkable water.

The aim of the unit is to give water independence to individual families.

Mr Binns says he was motivated to design the unit after watching a news report on TV, which showed a mother holding her baby who had died from a lack of clean water.

He said: "It was a heart-stopping image. You see the need. These are our neighbours and they are just down the road so you want to help."

Inventors, Dr Vejen Hlebarov and Professor Denis Chamberlain, brought their revolutionary solar water heating system to Epicuro.

Mr Binns, who is Epicuro's director, suggested that the technology should instead be used for the solar desalination of seawater to help solve the world's drinking water shortage.

Together with Mark Quinn and Charlie McDermott of Epicuro, and with seed investment from beverage and property tycoon, Howard Raymond, they have developed this game-changing new water treatment technology.