Environment This Team of Researchers Just Figured Out How to Desalinate Water with Solar Power
Environment This Team of Researchers Just Figured Out How to Desalinate Water with Solar Power.
New solar technology, however, might’ve just changed all that.
collected a cup of water from the ocean, then poured the salt water into a bowl.
After a few days in the sun, if I remember correctly, there was a film of salt in the bowl and the cup was nearly full of fresh water.
There are somewhere around 20,000 plants in various countries all over the world, but essentially boiling billions of gallons of water and collecting the condensation takes a lot of heat, which takes a lot of energy.
“Direct solar desalination could be a game changer for some of the estimated 1 billion people who lack access to clean drinking water,” said Qilin Li, a water treatment expert and one of the authors of the study.
“This off-grid technology is capable of providing sufficient clean water for family use in a compact footprint, and it can be scaled up to provide water for larger communities.” Like most great inventions, though, it’s not entirely new–instead, it improves on the technology already in use.
With membrane distillation, heated salt water and cold fresh water flow on opposite sides of a membrane.
“By adding low-cost, commercially available nanoparticles to a porous membrane, NEWT has essentially turned the membrane itself into a one-sided heating element that alone heats the water to drive membrane distillation.” Right now, it’s not much good.
The amount of heat, of course, will only increase as the membrane gets bigger.