Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have developed a portable device that can desalinate and remove particles from seawater, making it safe to drink.
Weighing less than 10 kg, the device is the size of a handbag and requires less energy to operate than it takes to charge a mobile phone battery. In addition, its operation is very simple: just press a button.
Unlike other portable desalination devices, which require periodic filter replacement, the device created by MIT researchers uses electrical energy to remove particles from the water. The result is drinking water that even exceeds the quality standards set by the World Health Organization (WHO).
According to the developers, the need for filter replacement significantly reduces the long-term maintenance costs. This may favor the deployment of the device in remote areas with limited resources, such as on small islands or on board sea cargo ships.
The portable water machine can be useful in extreme situations
According to one of the project’s authors, Jongyoon Han, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, biological engineering and a member of MIT’s Research Electronics Laboratory (RLE), the device could also be used to help victims of natural disasters or soldiers on long-term missions.
“It is the culmination of a 10-year journey that my group and I have traveled. We have been working for years with the physics behind individual desalination processes, but putting all these advances in a box, building a system and demonstrating it in the ocean has been a truly meaningful and rewarding experience for me, ”he said. .