Produced by: MOS Video Department

On April 28, MIT introduced a portable desalination unit using a new technology.

The data shows that existing desalination devices often require a high-pressure pump to push seawater through filters, making it difficult to miniaturize devices. The new study of MIT adopts a technique called ion concentration polarization. It uses an electrical field to remove positive and negative ions such as salt molecules, bacteria, and viruses in seawater. In addition, to achieve water purification, the researchers also added electrodialysis to remove remaining salt ions in the water, allowing the process to remain self-cleaning while minimizing energy usage.

On the other hand, the desalination unit only needs to use electrical power to remove particles from seawater. Moreover, it reduces greatly the need for filter replacement to significantly decrease maintenance cost, and the power required is even less than a mobile phone charger.

The new portable desalination unit can provide fresh water for remote or severely resource-limited areas, including small islands, cargo ships, and areas suffering natural disasters.

At present, the device can be controlled wirelessly by smartphone app, automatically notifying the users of real-time data on power consumption and water salinity once the salinity level and the number of particles decrease to a specific threshold.

Posted by: Xueli