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Portable water purification devices – also known as point-of-use (POU) water treatment systems and field water disinfection techniques – are self-contained units that can be used by recreational enthusiasts, military personnel, survivalists, and others who must obtain drinking water from untreated sources (e.g., rivers, lakes, etc.). The objective of these personal devices is to render unchlorinated water potable (that is, safe and palatable for drinking purposes).
Many commercial portable water purification systems or chemical additives are available for hiking, camping, and other travel in remote areas. These devices are not only used for remote or rural areas, but also to treat safe municipal water for aesthetic purposes by removing chlorine, bad taste, odors, and heavy metals like lead and mercury.