Water from air: University of Sydney's new nano-technology

A new nano-technology from the University of Sydney can literally extract water out of thin air.

Plants use nano-technology to bead almost perfect spheres of water, cleaning away dust and bacteria. Source: Wikimedia Commons

The technology, called Advanced Capture Water from the Atmosphere (ACWA), could supply millions of litres of water in typically arid regions dealing with major water scarcity issues.

Based on a new nano-material developed by a team of researchers led by Prof. Chiara Neto and Prof. Martijn de Sterke, ACWA is garnering significant commercial interest after recently winning the Bridge Hub 2020 Water Challenge.

The new material operates by accelerating and channelling water condensation from the atmosphere without requiring any energy or chemical inputs.

Nano-technologies are created on the nano scale (a nanometre is one million times smaller than a millimetre), a branch of science and engineering that manipulates materials at the atomic or molecular level.

Diagram of the new ACWA water harvesting tech