The London-based company Desolenator has put forth an innovative solution to clean drinking water with a product that purifies dirty water through the process of distillation.
via Triple Pundit:
A new solution was recently announced by Desolenator, a London-based company that launched its first product with a successful $150,000 Indiegogo campaign. Like the MIT product, it too is portable, but it differs from all the systems mentioned above because instead of relying on reverse-osmosis filtration, it purifies dirty water — including sea water — by distillation: the simple process of boiling the water and then condensing the steam back into a liquid. While simpler and less reliant on specialized filter materials than RO systems, the need to boil the water requires a great deal of energy.
That’s where there innovation kicks in. While most solar photovoltaic systems try to eliminate heat since it does not contribute to the generation of electricity, the Desolenator captures the heat using insulation, and then uses it to preheat the water to the point where it is nearly boiling. This reduces the amount of energy required to complete the process in a small integrated boiler powered by the solar panels. A single solar-powered unit can provide 15 liters of clean water per day, enough for the drinking and cooking needs of a family of six.
In a sense, it’s a form of combined heat and power (CHP), a technology usually associated with fossil fuel power plants. A few years back I wrote about a couple of other companies, Naked Energy and Cogenra, that combined solar PV and solar thermal, though neither of these used it for desalination.
Inventor and CEO William Janssen told the BBC that the Desolenator can produce desalinated water less expensively than any other option available.