Solar Condensers offer an environmentally friendly way which combines worlds’ of the two most abundant sources: solar energy and water. These systems help in harnessing water even with 20% humidity in the atmosphere.
How do these systems work?
The info graph below shows a simplistic flow of how solar energy is used to get drinking water.
The Solar PV panel produces electricity when solar energy falls on it. The electricity produced runs a fan which pulls in air. The air is then passed through a porous membrane where the water vapour present in the air gets compressed. This water is then stored in a reservoir after adding some minerals to make it drinkable.
Are these systems feasible?
These systems can be a gamechanger in providing clean drinking water in underserved and desert areas. Zero Mass water is one such organisation who have embarked on a journey of “making drinking water an unlimited source”, their product called ‘’Source’.
Zero Mass’ water-harvesting technology has been in the works for almost a decade. The first prototype was developed in Arizona State University, where Cody Friesen, the founder of Zero Mass, was teaching engineering and materials science. Over the past years, Zero Mass’ panels—called Source—have been available to specific customers: multilateral institutions, recipients of emergency aid, investors, and friends of the company.
Fig 1: Source installed in Navajo nation to harness water in dry area
How much water is present in the atmosphere?
Water is omnipresent in the atmosphere. One estimate of the volume of water in the atmosphere at any one time is about 12,900 cubic kilometers (km3). That may sound like a lot, but it is only about 0.001 percent of the total Earth’s water volume of about 1,385,000,000 km3. If all of the water in the atmosphere rained down at once, it would only cover the globe to a depth of 2.5 centimeters, about 1 inch.
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Source: @zeromasswater & @Solar_Edition
Photo: @zeromasswater & @Solar_Edition
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