The Czech Republic’s booth at Expo 2020 in Dubai has a surprising addition to its lineup – a system that can both extract water from the atmosphere and try to create arable land from desert areas. The UAE’s water consumption is around 500 liters per day, a staggering amount for a country that exists amid a desert. The Czech tech called Solar Air Water Earth Resource (SAWER) seems like the perfect addition to the country’s infrastructure to deal with their water scarcity. Not only does it look like a good fit for Dubai, but if it proves successful there, states like California may see promise in adopting the technology for their own usage.
How SAWER Works
SAWER’s dual system process is broken up into the water extraction and water distribution functions. The water extraction method creates hyper-humid air from which water is removed using a desiccant. The atmosphere is heated, raising its capacity to carry water vapor, and more evaporated water is added to it. As the air moves into the condensation chamber and cools down, the extra humidity in the air condenses to form potable water.
The second stage of implementation sees the water from the first stage being used alongside a photobioreactor. A mixture of water and micro-algae is added to barren earth (such as a desert). The mixture revives the capacity of the plot of land to grow plants. Ideally, the system will be able to bring back even the most barren desert areas into arable farmland.
The only drawback of the system is that it can be expensive to implement. The cost of the system currently stands at $400,000, but the research team believes they can reduce that price to a mere $14,000, making it affordable for even cast-strapped areas of the world. The system runs exclusively on solar energy (making it entirely environmentally friendly) and can produce up to 20 liters of water a day per installation.