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New generator makes drinkable water out of thin air

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Of all the natural resources on Earth, water is perhaps the most precious. At present around 1.2 billion people, or almost one-fifth of the world’s population, live in areas of water scarcity, and around a third of the world’s biggest groundwater systems are already in distress. So, access to clean and reliable sources of water is a major issue. An issue which the Skysource/Skywater Alliance wants to address with its new high-volume water generator that can create water out of thin air.
David Hertz, founder of Skysource, harvests water produced by a Skywater system in Big Sur, California.
(David Hertz, founder of Skysource, harvests water produced by a Skywater system in Big Sur, California).

The WEDEW (Wood-to-Energy Deployed Water System) has just been awarded a $1.5million XPrize and is the culmination of a two-year water extraction competition. At full capacity the system can produce 2,000 litres of water per day from the atmosphere using 100 percent renewable energy.

But how does it work? The WEDEW collects water from the atmosphere via a patented Adiabatic Distillation Process which creats its own clouds within a large metal box (about the size of a shipping container). The system draws warm air from outside and pulls it through an antimicrobial air filter to remove impurities. Once the air is inside the box, it is mixed with generated cold air inside. This process leads to the production of condensation which is then collected as drinkable water. The energy to power this whole process comes from wood chips and other biomass sources, making it renewable powered.

As is clear, this system will be ideal for those international locations that have poor infrastructure (be it power or water) and poor or diminishing water sources. The robust construction of the WEDEW system will also help it to operate in extreme locations. According to the Skysource/Skywater Alliance, the system will last from 10-15 years.

For those of you who may worry about the consequence of extracting water from the Earth’s atmosphere, the Skysource/Skywater Alliance assure us that there’s enough water within the atmosphere at any one time to fill the Great Lakes (around 3,100 cubic miles!). Thanks to the Earth’s hydrologic cycle, this water vapour is constantly replenished, so it’s unlikely that the WEDEW system would have any negative impact on the environment.

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Tags: Engineering
Recent Comments
Sounds a great idea, but is Wood Chip classed as renewable powered!
Davy Flaherty, 25 October 2018
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New generator makes drinkable water out of thin air - Time to read 2 min
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