Technology

So Simple It's Brilliant: A Machine that Makes Drinking Water from Air

DiscoblogBy Boonsri DickinsonNov 26, 2008 8:33 PM

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At a time when only one in six people on the planet have access to water and bottled water is not always the most practical (or environmentally sound) option, inventors are busy trying to turn just about anything into water. If you thought astronauts drinking water from urine was a bit gross, then drinking water made from air might sound like a far more appealing option. And now, the Canadian company Element Four’s Water Mill has determined a way to take moisture from the air and turn it into drinkable water. The machine is the size of a large golf ball cut in half , and it runs off the “electricity of about three light bulbs.” It works by pumping air through filters to get rid of dust and other particles, and then cools the purified air until water starts to condense. Then the condensed water goes through a UV light unit to clean it so bacteria won’t get in it and cause infections or disease. The benefits of the machine are two-fold: Besides getting cleaner air, you’d also get up to 12 liters a day of clean drinking water. And for those who live in dry places like Colorado, Ritchey has outfitted the Water Mill with a computer that senses changes in humidity so that more water is produced. Related content: 80Beats: BPA DISCOVER: Dirty Truth About Plastic

Image: flickr / Obi-Akpere

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