This paper presents a review of currently available data from the literature on the undrained shear strength, bulk density, stickiness and debris content of faecal sludge. Those data have been used to develop two different simulants that replicate the full range of shear strengths and densities reported for faecal sludge. Comprehensive specifications are also presented for the debris or solid waste found in latrines to more closely replicate the challenge of pumping faecal sludge. Finally, a design guide has been produced to capture these results and support quantitative performance testing of desludging pumps. The simulants have already been used as part of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Faecal Sludge Omni-Ingestor project and by Water for People's SaniHub in developing improved desludging pumps. The wider use of these simulants could accelerate the development of pit emptying technologies and help standardize the quantitative evaluation of their performance.

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