x
Breaking News
More () »

Drinking water is being made from the power of the sun at ASU's Polytechnic campus

Water from the farm at ASU can make 400,000 gallons of drinking water a year.

PHOENIX — Drought is a really big problem, not just for Arizona, but across the world. The World Health Organization said as many as 700-million people are at risk of being displaced because of drought by 2030.

In Arizona, a sustainable solution is in the works to improve conditions with these looming water scarcities.

“We love to see technology deployed across our innovation zones here at ASU," Aric Bopp, Executive Director of Economic Development in Innovation Zones in the Knowledge Enterprise at ASU, said.

Arizona State University's Polytechnic campus in the East Valley is home to a water farm. There, about 200 panels are off the grid, using the power of the sun to produce drinkable water from the environment.

"Taking in ambient air, and effecting a form of passive condensation inside the machine, and extracting the water vapor from the air that's all around us and making pure crisp drinking water out of that," Tom Borns, a Source Global U.S. direct sales manager, said. 

RELATED: Dry farmland and a defunct resort; the repercussions of Lake Mead's water shortage

The project, first developed at ASU, is not only used locally but in the Navajo Nation and in 54 countries around the world like Africa, Australia and the Middle East.

“Some of these cases are large water farms providing water for a community and other cases they’re a circular and renewable bottling solution," Borns said.

Water from the farm at ASU can make 400,000 gallons of drinking water a year. The water is then packaged in recyclable bottles, replacing 3,000,000 single-use plastic water bottles. 

ALSO: Receding waters: Why a once-thriving resort on Lake Mead has all but disappeared

“We can truly make water anywhere the sun comes up," Borns said. 

The farm is located at ASU’s Poly-innovation zone, where there are more plans for future sustainability in our Valley and across the world.

“Where we want to develop solutions that are going to solve problems across water, food and energy," Bopp said. "And this is a great fit with that theme.”

Just like solar panels used for electricity, the Source hydropanels can be installed in homes. Two panels can fill 72 to 96 bottles of water per week.

12 News on YouTube

Catch up on the latest news and stories on the 12 News YouTube channel. Subscribe today.