Saturday, July 05, 2008

Water from Air?

Israeli president Ehud Olmert is shown above with Michael Zwebner and other executives at Air-Water Corporation in Miami Beach. The big piece of equipment on the floor supposedly "makes" water from air by condensation. As the company website explains, water does condense from atmospheric water vapor naturally in the hydrologic cycle. However, I cannot imagine that these units can actually condense the volumes of water which are claimed.

There is a one patent posted which appears to describe the unit above -

A portable water purification and collection system includes a cabinet member having an interior chamber defined by a plurality of side walls, one of which has a vent thereon. Received within the interior chamber and adjacent the vent is a fan for inducing air flow from the atmosphere to the cabinet interior. Between the fan and the vent is an electrostatic air filter for removing particulates from the air as well as a condenser for producing condensate therefrom. The resulting condensate drips into a collection reservoir and then to an ultraviolet light unit that destroys microorganisms within the condensate. From the ultraviolet light unit, the condensate flows to a main reservoir from which it may be dispensed to an external container via a spigot mounted to a cabinet side wall.

Olmert has been involved in other shady business dealings in the United States, receiving substantial campaign contributions from indicted financier Morris Talansky. Muckraking and "indy" journalists are claiming that Air Water Corporation is simply a "penny stock" scheme in which there is really no marketable product and investors are being duped. Stories about the Air Water units have nonetheless been widely reported by Reuters, StreetInsider, SmallCapWatch, and other reputable sources of investment news. If this is a con, it is clearly a successful one. It remains to be seen whether Ehud Olmert is in on the con, is being duped, or is merely profiting off of an innovative solution to the global water crisis.

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At 10:23 AM , Blogger george.w said...

It should be relatively easy to figure out how much water you can get from a given volume of air at a given humidity level. For instance, the dehumidifier in my basement produces 2 gallons a day; I suspect one in a place where there are severe water shortages will produce considerably less.

They claim the 500-liter model can operate on solar PV power. But the 5,000 liter/day model uses 85kw! 380v three-phase power - a study in impracticality. There must surely be more efficient ways to get water. I believe Dean Kamen is working on a purifier.

At 2:31 PM , Blogger Don Thieme said...

Thanks for the link on Dean Kamen. Purification seems workable, but condensing as much as 5,000 liters does not. I think that Air-Water is a fraud.


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