Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras faculty have come up with a method to tackle the ongoing water crisis in Chennai by atmospheric water harvesting, the Indian Express reports.
MS scholar Ramesh Kumar, professor T Pradeep and PhD scholar Ankit Nagar’s brainchild ‘Atmospheric Water Generators’ (AWG) harnesses moisture in the air to provide potable water.
“The inspiration for atmospheric water harvesting comes from coastal deserts, were beetles and banana leaves, which are present in nature, harvest humidity efficiently. It inspired us to make a new surface using nano and microengineering and come up with something that enables faster condensation,” said Ankit Nagar.
The AWG procure water in three steps via a machine. Currently, there is a prototype of the machine of 100 litres deployed at their campus in Chennai, along with a few other places. The company makes prototype machines with a capacity of 400 litres and 2,000 litres.
The cost of purchasing a 100-litre machine is Rs 1.5 lakh, and operating costs range between Rs 1.50 to Rs 2.50 per litre. Ankit adds that they have various machines with a variety of capacity to address different requirements. The machines are completely off-grid and require less maintenance as they can run on solar power.
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