Defense contractor takes break from F-35 JSF, finds a way to eliminate 99% of the energy cost of desalination. Lockheed-Martin has developed a way to craft sheets of carbon a single atom thick, which can filter the salt (and just about anything else) from water with a tiny fraction of the energy required by current processes. "Lockheed officials see other applications for Perforene as well, from dialysis in healthcare to cleaning chemicals from the water used in hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," of oil and gas wells." Previously.
Researchers at MIT and in Korea have developed a new, efficient desalinization nanotechnology that could theoretically lead to small, portable units powered by solar cells or batteries, yet deliver enough potable fresh water from seawater to supply the needs of a family or small village. As an added bonus, the system would simultaneously remove many contaminants, viruses and bacteria. MIT Press Release. Abstract and Supplementary Information from Nature Nanotechnology. (pdf) [more inside]
Got Water? Fresh water is a necessity for human survival, but many areas of the world are starting to feel the crunch. One solution to this problem that has been applied in a few areas is collecting fresh water from fog (here's how!). This technology has been a boon to places like Chungungo, Chile. Now a small beetle from the Namib Desert may hold the key to making fog collection even more successful. Water attracting and repelling bumps and valleys on the beetle's wings collect and transport water from fog. Currently, QinetiQ is developing synthetic materials with these same properties, which may make the similar technique of dew collection even more feasible.