For an up-to-date list of AWG suppliers please see the Supplier Links page. As of today, I am aware of 35 suppliers in 13 countries. Thanks to site visitor Chris S. for several leads to supplier web sites. If I omitted any suppliers, please let me know using the form on the Supplier Links page. Thank you!
Where are water-from-air machines an appropriate and effective niche technology for augmenting drinking water supplies? I've produced this water vapour density map to provide a quick guide. Locations within the latitude band 30° N to 30° S are usually good unless they are at high altitudes (more than a few hundred metres above sea level). Outside of this band, machines are likely to perform satisfactorily during the summer (high sun) season. Locations with less than 7.2 grams of water vapour per cubic metre of moist air (see legend below the map) are unlikely to be good locations for water-from-air production—the energy cost of producing a litre of liquid water is going to be unacceptable to most users.
Please click on the map to see a larger image.
Mean water vapour density at sea level averaged over the ten year period 2001 to 2010. The base image was provided by Physical Sciences Division, Earth System Research Laboratory, NOAA, Boulder, Colorado, from their web site at http://esri.noaa.gov/psd/.
Users of water-from-air systems are interested first usually in two pieces of information;
Comparison is made easier by manufacturers giving machine specifications for standard test conditions. Many manufacturers use this standard:
Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers: Dehumidifiers, AHAM DH-1-2008.
This standard (available for purchase from AHAM for $25 at this link) is referenced by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Inc. (ASHRAE; http://www,ashrae.org) in the 2008 ASHRAE Handbook, Heating, Ventilating, and Air-Conditioning Systems and Equipment, Chapter 24, Mechanical Dehumidifiers and Related Components.
At standard test conditions, the air entering the dehumidifier (water-from-air machine) must have:
AHAM DH-1 provides details on instrumentation, test procedures, nameplate data, capacity test and energy consumption test, performance tests, and safety.
The March 2012 issue of Water Technology had an interesting article by Jack Barber, titled pH paranoia: Understanding alkaline water claims. The take-home message was there is no health benefit to alkaline water. In fact, "...once alkaline water enters your stomach, your body simply pours in greater amounts of [gastric] acid to neutralize it." See the original article here.
How much interest is there in water-from-air technology? Wikipedia provides page view statistics for its articles. These statistics provided a crude estimate of interest from the English-reading, Internet-using public. Here is the table I assembled, with twenty-eight Wikipedia articles listed in order of page views in the last 30 days as of April 10, 2012. I started with the reference list in the Atmospheric water generator article. As I went from one referenced article to the other a point was reached when no new relevant references were found.
The hierarchy of public interest in these related topics was made evident. The water cycle must be a popular topic in schools!
The article Atmospheric water generator, with 4178 page views was of most interest because that terminology has become widely used to describe commercial machines that produce drinking water from the ambient air. The article, Desalination, had a much higher profile, attracting 10 times as many page views. For those of us seeking to raise the profile of water-from-air technology---we have a lot of work to do given only 100 to 150 people viewed the AWG article each day. How many read it is another matter!
(By the way, I have not been a contributor to Wikipedia articles.)
Table: Water-from-air relevant topics in Wikipedia
My ten-month duration project management contract with BC Hydro's Load Analysis Department came to it's scheduled end on March 30. The main task was to bring the Residential End-Use Metering Project (REUMP) Phase 3 into its operational stage by installing energy-recorder devices at each outlet in thirteen volunteer households in Metro Vancouver. Data will be collected during the next two years by the Load Analysis Department to develop up-to-date knowledge about appliance and lighting loads.
Now I will re-focus on water-from-air technology development!
I have been researching and developing drinking-water-from-air technologies since 1984. As a physical geographer, I strive to contribute an accurate, scientific point-of-view to the field.