Turning Arabian Desert Fog Into Energy and Water (Green Prophet)

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by Joseph Mayton

The search for fresh water is on and United Arab Emirates-based Masdar Institute of Science and Technology believes that its new collaboration with the region’s National Research Foundation (NRF) will help detect fog and monitor the precipitation for the expansion of renewable fresh water sources as well as what the company said will improve safety and transportation monitoring when fog events occur.

The idea is simple. By following the fog the company hopes that it can then develop nano-composite material with the goal of harvesting water from the atmosphere, i.e. from the fog.

The location of the UAE on the edge of a very warm sea on the one side and hot and dry desert on the other create the optimal conditions of inland fog forming. The afternoon sea breeze –almost a daily event in the UAE’s coastal areas – transports moisture inland, then at clear sky conditions at night, the large surrounding desert radiates heat very efficiently and temperatures fall quickly. The rapid cooling of accumulated inland moisture during the night facilitates conditions for fog development.

According to the Emirates official news agency WAM and a press release issued by Masdar, the projects are being split into two separate actions to work together on boosting the use of fog, detection and grabbing of fresh water.



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Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.