New Harvester Designed That Absorbs Water From Air

Business water saving strategies - H2O Building Services


A team of researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, have been working on the design of a new water harvester, about the size of a microwave, that will be able to pull over 1.3 litres of water from low-humidity air a day for every kilogram of water-absorbing material.


The brainchild of Omar Yaghi and his colleagues, the device will be capable of working in hot, dry deserts around the world. Field tests have been held in the Mojave Desert, with the harvester producing 0.7 litres per kilo of absorber daily, with is almost three cups of pure H2o. It works 24 hours a day, powered by solar panels and a battery.


The device will soon be marketed, able to supply between seven and ten litres of water a day, which is enough cooking and drinking water for two to three adults each day. The National Academy of Sciences recommends that men should drink 3.7 litres and women 2.7 litres of fluid a day.


“It is well known that in order to condense water from air at a low humidity – less than 40 per cent relative humidity – you need to cool down the air to below freezing, to zero degrees Celsius, which is impractical. With our harvester, we are doing this at very low humidity without such cooling; there is no other material that can do that.


This is not like a dehumidifier, which operates at high relative humidity. Some people say that 0.7 liters is not a lot of water. But it is a lot of water, if you don’t have water,” professor of chemistry Omar Yaghi said.


The productivity of this new device is ten times that harvested by its predecessor and 100 times higher than the proof-of-concept device. No organics or signs of metal have been found in the water.


If you and your business are concerned about water stress and scarcity – a global issue that affects us here in the UK as well, even with our wet climate – it might well be worth looking into business water saving strategies to see what could be achieved.


You could, for example, have a full site survey carried out to focus on water leak detection and repair. This will find any leaks at your place of business so you can arrange for repair work to be carried out as appropriate.


Or what about water monitoring? This involves installing remote monitoring equipment on site to track water flow every hour for ten hours. This will allow you to maximise efficiency and help you spot leaks immediately, which could save you thousands of pounds.


It’s possible to achieve savings in excess of 30 per cent of your current water bill, so you can save water, reduce costs and increase your profits.