Man is constantly trying to develop technology in such a manner which makes life smoother for humans. A number of innovations are replacing natural resources so that we don’t need to rely on them in near future. But it is almost impossible to find an alternative for water. Also, water is one of the key factors needed for basic survival. But due to issues like global warming, pollution, population explosion, and many others, the gap between the demand and supply of water is increasing rapidly. Therefore it is important to come up with an innovation that can help curb this gap to a considerable extent. Keeping this in mind, the researchers at MIT have created a structure that can create clean, drinking water with the help of vapor present in the air. The MIT solar cube can extract water from the moist air and put it to use.
This solar cube sounds like an appealing concept as it has the ability to extract water to make the most of the moisture in the atmosphere. This isn’t the first time when a group of researchers has tried to utilize moisture to attain water. But this practice is usually done in coastal regions where there is a humid environment. This makes it easier for the device to catch hold of water-holding components. Even though it’s the simpler way out, it is an expensive process. But this is the first time a project can convert moisture into the water even in the driest of deserts. And the MIT solar cube is comparatively cheaper to its contemporary projects.
How does the MIT solar cube work
The researchers at MIT and the University of California at Berkeley are behind this concept. They claim that this process is the first of its kind which has the potential for use in almost all locations, irrespective of the humidity level it contains. This is done by developing an absolutely passive system. This system is based on a foam-like material which absorbs moisture from the air into its pores. This entire process is completely powered by solar heat. Therefore it avoids the extra cost or pollution that takes place due to the electric supply of power.
The researchers have created this water harvesting cube which is capable of harvesting water even in conditions which have humidity as low as 20 percent. This number will make sense after a further comparison. The average humidity in the Sahara Desert is 25 percent, which means that the MIT solar cube can easily harvest water here. If the solar cube can harvest water in the Sahara, it means that it can work in other deserts as well. This method might prove to be a major benefit at the poorest of places in the world where drinking water is hardly available. The first prototype was able to pull out 2.8 liters water from the air of the Sahara in 12 hours. But the researchers assure that with further research, the efficiency of the MIT solar cube will definitely increase.