Monday, November 16, 2015

A shocking development...

A shocking development...  MIT scientists have come up with a novel method for cleaning up water, including getting rid of the salt in salt water (desalination).  Their method uses shock waves to concentrate dirty water on one side of a passage, and clean on the other.  It doesn't use any membranes to get clogged, doesn't require high pressures or temperatures, and  (most importantly) is vastly more energy-efficient than any current desalination method.

This is very clever engineering, and a great example of technological innovation that defies conventional wisdom.  In this case, the assumption has long been that desalination was a high-energy process, and methods like reverse-osmosis that took less energy were complicated and high maintenance.  Here these guys come along with a method that's basically careful banging on the pipes, turning conventional wisdom on its head and out-performing every other method.  Awesome!

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