The Cube (AKA the Spectra Solar Brackish Water System) is a portable solar and wind powered desalination unit that can produce 950 to 1500 gallons of fresh water each day. Attached photovoltaic cells generate up to 1240 watts, while the wind generator can produce up to 1000 watts.
The Cube generates more power than is necessary for water production, so excess energy can be used for other things—such as the operation of emergency equipment.
And the Solar Cube has already been tested in tough environments. Recently, it was deployed for testing by the Chilean military and civilian services, where it was used in identical conditions to those found in Iraq. During the past year, the Cube was also introduced to remote areas of South America and Asia. Prototypes were used in Pakistan after the major 1995 earthquake in the country.
The Cube has performed well—the system has a recovery rate of 30% and produces high quality water that contains less than 170 mg/L of seawater.
While the Solar Cube probably won’t be used in major metropolitan areas anytime soon, it is ideal for disaster sites and locations that have limited access to fresh water. Personally, I’d like to keep one in storage in case of emergency. I just need to come up with $38,000 to cover the asking price.
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Ariel Schwartz was formerly the editor of CleanTechnica and is a contributor at Fast Company, Inhabitat, Triple Pundit, SF Weekly, and NBC Bay Area Online. A graduate of Vassar College, she has previously worked in publishing, organic farming, documentary film, and newspaper journalism. Her interests include permaculture, hiking, skiing, music, relocalization, and cob (the building material). She currently resides in San Francisco, CA.