Who’s Thirsty

Who’s thirsty? Harry Potter says … AGUAMENTE!

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science.

That’s the wizarding charm to summon clean water with the wave of a wand! What if we could do the same – pull water from the air?

Enter Iwan Haechler and colleagues from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich! 

They’ve developed a device to harvest water with ZERO energy! It’s a coated glass pane that reflects sunlight away to cool itself down. As the device cools, it can reach fifteen degrees lower than its surroundings. Then voila! Water vapor in the air condenses into dew on the underside of the pane. 

How much water? In one hour, one point eight fluid ounces were harvested from a three foot square pane. That’s a Tall size Starbucks cup in just six hours! !

The researchers hope this device can help provide water to drought-stricken areas!

Now if only I could magic a whipped pumpkin latte into my hand! What’s the charm for THAT?

Reference: Haechler, I., Park, H., Schnoering, G., Gulich, T., Rohner, M., Tripathy, A., Milionis, A., Schutzius, T. M., & Poulikakos, D. (2021). Exploiting radiative cooling for uninterrupted 24-hour water harvesting from the atmosphere. Science Advances, 7(26), eabf3978. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abf3978

Image from research article.