The new Zip HydroTap Touch-Free Wave

This article intially appeared on Franke South Africa's "make it wonderful" blog

In a quick-thinking pivot, Zip Water invents its latest innovation in the flagship HydroTap range to meet shifting global customer demand brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Zip Water has created the HydroTap Touch-Free Wave, a contactless drinking water system that delivers instant filtered boiling, chilled and sparkling water. The innovative product is a contactless version of the company’s signature HydroTap, using in-house proprietary sensor technology to dispense instant filtered boiling, chilled and sparkling water all from the one system touch-free.

With health and hygiene now an absolute priority in the workplace, the Zip HydroTap Touch Free Wave allows employees to stay hydrated and healthy, while avoiding surface contact to minimise the risk of virus transmission.

Design & Development

In order to get the HydroTap Touch-Free Wave to market, Zip Water innovation manager, Kevin Moult, says the company drew on industry-leading techniques to fast-track development of this first-of-its kind solution using in-house proprietary sensor technology to deliver a minimum viable product and prototype in record time.

“By using advanced manufacturing techniques, including 3D printing and rapid prototyping, we were able to achieve our first viable prototype in half the usual time. The biggest challenge we faced was fitting four infrared sensors into the tap head, which only has a diameter of 4.5cm, so that they didn’t intersect and confuse commands. If you think about other contactless technology, like sensor-driven hand washing or toilet flushing systems, they only need to fit one or two sensors into a much, much bigger space, and they’re usually all facing the same direction,” Moult says.

How it works

With a simple wave of a hand, infrared smart sensors detect hand movements between 1.5 - 5cm in range of the tap. All drinking water types will have a maximum run time of 15 seconds which is adjustable from the under counter command centre.

There is a twin sensor activation safety feature for activation of boiling water to protect against workplace injury as a result of scalding. The dispensing of hot water also deactivates when the tap is touched or grabbed to allow for safe cleaning.

Enjoy the same industry leading technology from Zip HydroTap to access pure tasting filtered water. Zip HydroTap Touch-Free Wave integrates Australian made innovation with patented PowerPulse boiling, Direct DryChilling and ColdCore Carbonation technologies with MicroPurity filtration to transform tap water instantly.