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Sheffield Hallam University
Art and Design Graduate Showcase

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Alex Lewis
Saguaro 45L
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Alex Lewis
Saguaro 45L

Saguaro 45L is a battery-powered water tank compatible with common construction site tools. To prevent inhalation of toxic dust, tools such as concrete saws feature hose connections and ‘wet-cutting kit’, which create a mist that combines with airborne dust and falls to the ground safely as slurry. However, these systems require frequent refilling and repressuring which is a source of significant frustration to users, and a barrier to their use. With Alex Lewis’ Saguaro 45L the system becomes less of an obstacle, fostering a positive attitude amongst workers who will be inclined to use the system more often.

The tank outputs a regulated flow of 1L/min for up to 5.5hrs with its 2 rechargeable NiMH batteries. It is compatible with a range of tools: various concrete saws with its 3m hose; and tools such as breakers and scabblers with its proprietary spray wand. This can be mounted to the side of the tank to operate ‘autonomously’. Its outlet nozzles are ruggedised, quick to replace when clogged and easy to disassemble for cleaning when necessary. Considerations have been made for the unit’s weight in the shape of the frame and its handles, and the reliability of its electronic parts in a rough outdoor environment.

Alex Lewis is passionate about the role design can have in affecting positive change:

“designers have the power and the responsibility to improve people’s lives through their profession, now more than ever. Today, we have an incredible ability to create complex tools and machines, and I am driven by an altruistic desire to use this technology for good. I strive to create products and services that disrupt the status quo, and to experiment with established norms to make a product stand out against its competitors”.

One of his final year projects applied his skills to service design, developing a digital support service for unpaid carers. He has also worked with Equip Outdoor Technologies, where he developed product concepts for their North Face brand.

Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
The system can be dismantled with common screwdrivers and keys, for cleaning, repair, or part replacement.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Puncture-proof airless tyres prevent tedious maintenance work. If the tyres do need replacement, or cleaning, they are easily removable with common wrenches.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Short- and Long-term maintenance were major factors in designing the system. For example: The wand’s nozzles are removable and replaceable for when they become clogged and are easy to dismantle for cleaning during a break period.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
The proprietary spray wand enables workers to douse dusty tools or ground by hand, or in an ‘automated’ way by mounting it to the side of the tank. This way, one less worker is needed to operate the machine – they are free to continue other work and less man-hours are wasted.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Major touchpoints and key working parts
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Saguaro 45L outputs water through a hose fitting at its rear – a hose is provided to connect to a range of tools, or the integrated spray wand.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Airborne solid particles present a significant health hazard, but few more so than materials such as silica – often the main constituent of concrete and cement.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Managing dust created by construction work is difficult. Many workers would rather risk long-term health issues than set-up dust control apparatus.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
A live roadworks site was studied to gain understanding of the issues workers face in managing construction dust.
Saguaro 45L by Alex Lewis
Saguaro 45L is a battery-powered water distribution system for construction site dust control.