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How Zero Mass Water Is Turning Air into Water


Oct. 15 2019, Updated 1:43 p.m. ET

Clean drinking water is the difference between life and death. In places where wells are poisoned, rivers polluted, or there is no good water distribution system, people can walk hours to find water for drinking or cooking. Enter Zero Mass Water and its solar-powered units that literally squeeze the humidity out of the air to create pure water (and mineralize it, so it tastes good).

In this video from CES2019, I speak with Cody Friesen—CEO of Zero Mass Water and associate professor at Arizona State University. He provides an overview of how their self-contained, solar-powered conversion process works. He also cites numerous examples of how their product, SOURCE, is creating water in places where water infrastructure is poor or non-existent.

Zero Mass Water is sure to receive lots of press at CES2020—as this pre-conference interview on the CES website indicates—with board member and investor Dr. Carmichael Roberts.

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Zero Mass Water interview highlights

  • 00:50 – It will be a boon to places where is no water infrastructure—places where people must carry water from wells, for example. He provides an example of where female students would have to walk two miles a day to fetch dirty water from a river. With 40 of their Hydropanels installed, their solution now serves the schoolgirls with clean water and promises to produce over 1 million liters of water over the life of the SOURCE Hydropanels.
  • 01:51 – The water provided at the show was pulled from Sonoran Desert air that only had 5% humidity, proving its versatility. He points out that this is great for disaster recovery when traditional water supplies are not available. Friesen calls this an infrastructure-free solution, as the integrated solar panels supply the electricity and no connections to a water supply system are necessary.
  • 02:42 – Friesen indicates that it will operate in spotty cloud conditions and will operate in a range of humidity and sunlight conditions. As he says, “From Perth to Manila.”
  • 03:19 – The target is to perfect water for drinking purposes. As the costs fall, Friesen anticipates that the market will grow to include other applications.
  • 03:41 – The cost per liter is about one-tenth the cost of bottled water, and he suggests that a water-as-a-service model would be about one-third the cost of delivered bottled water, and it would eliminate the environmental and economic costs of water delivery trucks. 
  • 04:23 – Friesen explains that he installed two Hydropanels at his house and now has 80 PSI, 8.1 PH, water piped into his sink and refrigerator.

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