Random Posts

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The DewGood

    DewGood is a company focused on making localized sources of fresh water for farming and drinking. Their first project is the DG-10, a small appliance that can make up to 10 gallons of water a day. This product is for people who don't have access to fresh water, farmers, indoor growers, gardeners who are tired of being fined for water use and all in-between. With the successful launch of this product they claim they will continue to invent products which make water out of the air for people and plants. You can buy one for $1,500...plus shipping, of course. 
     Isn't that what my dehumidifier, which cost about $250, does? I wouldn't drink that water because the dehumidifier's coils are probably moldy or something, but I suppose the water would be safe to drink if it were boiled or chemically treated. If one wanted to, I also suppose the water it generates could be used for house plants or put in the iron. The problem is, the cost of electricity to run the thing is as much as a window air conditioning unit and it only generates about a gallon a day. The DewGood's 10 gallons a day, while substantially more than what a dehumidifier generates, is still only a drop in the bucket so to speak of what even a small garden would require. 
     The DewGood isn't the first technology that can turn water vapor in the air into liquid water. Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of California, Berkeley, came up with a way to do it using less power and one that works in drier environments. 
     A dehumidifier only works if the humidity is high, so what if you live in an arid climate? Even the driest places on earth have tons of water vapor in the air, but an ordinary dehumidifier isn't the answer; it takes a different technology.  
     The MIT contraption uses a powder that sucks up liquid water, but it can also absorb water vapor.  A thin layer of powder absorbs water vapor until it is saturated. Then they use  heat to release the water which collects in the bottom of the machine. Getting the chemical they use to release the water requires a very small amount of energy because the heat needed to drive the water out comes from ambient sunlight with no external power supply required. 
     But it's just a prototype and it used only a fraction of an ounce of the chemical powder, so the amount of water they got was pretty small. According to their calculations about 2 pounds of powder could deliver close to three quarts of water per day. However, it hasn't been determined that the water generated by their machine is free of contaminants. 
     While the DewGood is a viable concept, I'm not so sure buying one at this time is worth the money, nor would I want to become an investor. That said, I hope they are successful in accomplishing their stated goals.

No comments:

Post a Comment