If you remember your grade school science classes about the planet’s water cycle, then you know that the atmosphere is filled with water vapor that evaporated from water bodies on the surface of the planet. When the vapor cools, it turns back into water in the form of rain and continues the cycle.
An Israeli company called Water-Gen has built a machine that can efficiently harvest water vapor and literally produce clean drinking water out of thin air. The machine is designed pull water using a set of plastic “leaves” that funnel air and draw out moisture with the added advantage of dehumidifying air.
Water-Gen’s water generators come in three sizes and the largest one can pull up to 825 gallons of water per day at 80°F with 60% humidity. The middle-sized unit can produce 118 gallons and the smallest unit, which is the size of a standard water cooler and is suitable for the home or office, can produce 4 gallons of clean drinking water per day.
All you have to do is connect the device to a power source. You might think a device that pulls clean water out of the air probably uses up a lot of energy, but Water-Gen estimates that a gallon of water will only cost about 10 cents in energy usage.
Water-Gen’s CEO and founder Arye Kohavi told Business Insider that the company plans to bring the technology to hot and humid places in Africa, Southeast Asia, and Latin America that don’t have access to clean drinking water in pipes.
The company is engaged in talks with several governments to find the best way to implement the technology where it’s most needed. It’s currently performing field tests in places like Mexico City, Shanghai, and Mumbai, but its products are expected to become commercially available by the end of 2017.
Image credit: Business Insider