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In Sao Paulo, Brazil, a water crisis has been generated due to deforestation and as a result of global warming, which has motivated engineer Pedro Ricardo Paulino with an initiative to address water scarcity. It is about the “wateair”, a play on words between the English words “water” (water) and “air” (air), which since 2010 has sold 200 units; Pedro Ricardo has designed a machine capable of generating 5,000 liters of drinking water per day with a highly efficient condensation process that captures the water present in the humidity of the air and subjects it to a purification process for human consumption.
For Wateair to work it only needs to be connected to the outlet, but the amount of water produced depends directly on the humidity. In the case of air humidity less than 10%, it will stop the operation of the machine, so it is necessary that the environment is additionally dry. However, it is difficult for the air to be very dry at this level: the driest day in Sao Paulo this year the air humidity rate was 19%.
The machine has five steps to produce water: the air is sucked through the machine by means of turbines, the water molecules condense and become liquid, it passes through filters, and ultraviolet rays purify the water, another filter is added of minerals, and finally it is stored in a deposit and is ready for consumption.
"It does not matter if the environment is polluted since there are no solid particles in the water vapor," added the engineer, who claimed to have invested close to a million dollars in the last four years to develop the machine. In order for Wateair to work, it only needs to be plugged into the outlet, but the amount of water produced depends directly on the humidity.
According to Paulino's calculations, the price of obtaining a liter of water with his machine is 0.17 reais (about 8 cents). This price assumes that producing a cubic meter of water with the machine costs 170 reais, about $ 77, while the company that supplies the water in Sao Paulo offers the same volume, one liter, for 7.25 reais, about 3, 3 dollars.
According to the latest edition of the World Economic Forum Risk Report, water represents the third biggest problem on the planet after the fiscal crisis in the main world economies and the high levels of unemployment and underemployment at a global level.
According to a study presented this year by the United Nations on the world's water resources, some 768 million people do not have access to an improved source of water supply - one that adequately protects them from outside contamination.
The same report also foresees that the world demand for water, in terms of extraction, will grow by 55% by 2050 due to increased demand for production (400%), thermal energy generation (140%) and domestic consumption. (130%). According to forecasts, more than 40% of the global population will live in areas with severe water problems.
CCS Center for Solidarity Collaborations