Anyone here read DUNE by Frank Herbert? Or see the film directed by the brilliant David Lynch? OR see the miniseries on the Sci-Fi Channel? Well, if you have you would know about Wind Traps. On the desert planet the inhabitants constructed ways to trap moisture moving about in the atmosphere. Frank Herbert went through great pains to understand what it is like living in a desert environment. And then he invented systems that would logically take advantage of the elements and still be natural.
As is so often the case in the 20th and 21st century science fact has caught up to science fiction. The Pentagon’s ‘Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’ realized that soldiers serving in Iraq needed clean water. As you must know, the infrastructure for water, electricity and other social amenities were compromised during the course of the war. As Napoleon said, ‘an army travels on it’s stomach’. Water-harvesting technology was born.
Darpa won the contract to develop ‘Water Harvesting’. Since this is a military project the details are A BIG SECRET. It’s NOT sucking moisture out of the air. That much seems clear. Or as clear as anything coming out of the Pentagon. Salt seems to be involved. Hmmm.
The claim is that a ’20 foot machine’ will yield about 600 gallons of pure, clean water a day. And the system only requires 14 percent humidity. Which is why using it in a desert works fine.
Now, those of us who aren’t militaristic by nature will realize that such as system could also be one of the methods to get clean water to people trying to survive a natural disaster. Used in combination with something like LifeStraw (R) (for example), people in real need could be helped. Are you listening, FEMA?