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Students at the Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla are building a portable water filter that can help people who lack access to clean water. The graduate engineering students are using paper and nano-size silica particles to filter toxins produced by harmful growths of algae. They plan to demonstrate their project at the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Student Design Competition in June at a technology conference. Water-filtering technologies that exist on the market are often complicated and inaccessible to remote, rural communities that need them the most, said Sutapa Barua, a Missouri S&T chemical engineering professor who advises the students.