What Does the Research Say About Atmospheric Water Generation?
For the past two decades, atmospheric water generation (AWG) has allowed consumers to access water independently of the earth’s three main water sources. AWG has nevertheless found only limited use among consumers, businesses, and governments. Before considering AWG as a valid solution for the ever-growing global water crisis, it’s important to ask: What does the growing body of global scientific research say about atmospheric water generation?
Water treatment is needed
Traditional water access and distribution methods require that water be treated before reaching consumers. Although AWG provides water from sources completely independent of these traditional methods, AWG water also requires treatment before qualifying as safe for human consumption.
AWG water’s contamination issues aren’t with chemicals – they’re with pathogens. Research from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) EPA research has shown that, although element levels in AWG water fit within the agency’s primary and secondary drinking water standards, AWG water often contains concerning pathogens. In particular, the bacteria Legionella spp. and Mycobacterium spp. have been found in elevated levels in AWG water.
Although fecal coliforms and E. coli, which are leading water contaminants in certain regions of the world, have not been found in AWG water, Legionella spp. and Mycobacterium spp. are just as dangerous. The former pathogen causes the rare, pneumonia-like Legionnaire’s disease, and the latter can lead to ulcers, joint infections, and lung disease. Both pathogens are commonly associated with existing water infrastructure, which aptly eliminates them from drinking water. The EPA thus recommends that AWG water be treated with chlorine or ozone, but other filtration methods can eliminate these pathogens and a larger number of potential contaminants.
Air intake speed matters
Air doesn’t just magically make its way into AWG machines. These devices draw air in, often using intake fans. However, research has shown that, in certain cases, intake fans can actually reduce the volume of water generated.
In devices that require intake fans to access air for conversion to water, maintaining increased humidity levels and using thermoelectric coolers with high currents can increase AWG output. The challenge is that increasing thermoelectric currents in an AWG can increase a device’s energy use, and much of the energy grid is currently dependent on fossil fuels. Burning fossil fuels drives climate change, which in turn drives the global water crisis, the very peril against which AWGs are said to fight.
Cooling is more efficient than wet desiccation
A basic principle of AWG is that water vapor cooled below a certain temperature condenses. Many AWG machines thus generate water by cooling air to this temperature. Research has shown that cooling is a far more efficient method of water generation than wet desiccation.
In wet desiccation, salt in a heavily concentrated brine absorbs ambient humidity. The absorbed water is then extracted from the brine, resulting in an atmospheric generation method that requires no cooling. However, the cooling method generates far more water than wet desiccation and is, therefore, more commonly used. Some simple wet desiccation prototypes can generate at most one liter of water per day, whereas certain cooling-based AWG machines can generate as many as 10,000 liters of water per day.
TUAFI’s AWG factories address AWG’s problems
TUAFI’s AWG factories eliminate AWG’s longstanding challenges with purification, energy sourcing, and efficiency. These fully solar-powered factories include advanced filtration setups that generate 10,000 liters of water per day.
Drawing air into these factories doesn’t place a burden on the energy grid since the factories are solar-powered. This also provides flexibility for facility setup, allowing for factories to be built in far-flung areas when needed. Environmental contaminants are filtered from the air the moment it enters the factory, even before the air is converted to water. Conversion occurs in a chamber where temperature and humidity are maintained at the exact levels ideal for maximum water output.
After the water is generated, TUAFI’s AWG factories pass it through advanced filters to thoroughly purify it. The air passes through filtration as well, further minimizing the risk of bacteria that could pose a hazard. This water is then mineralized according to government regulations and packaged into biodegradable water bottles that can be distributed to any region of the world.
TUAFI’s AWG factories eliminate the concerns that decades of research have presented, making them ideal solutions for the global water crisis. Since the crisis affects all life on earth and continues to grow, TUAFI is encouraging all people to contribute to its AWG factories. Click here to learn more about TUAFI’s AWG factory project on Fundable and find out how you can help.