Investigating the effects of carbon felt and other carbonaceous materials on desalination rates of salt water under sunlight simulation
Fresh water and energy are fundamental needs for the enhancement of modern life and civilization. Fresh water and energy are becoming scare due to high living standards, rapid population growth, and development in the agriculture and industrial sectors. Using an accelerated and cost-effective energy process for the desalination of sea water can be an encouraging solution to the water problem. In the past, fossil fuels have been used as a dominant source of energy, but their detrimental impact on the environment and increased cost have made renewable energy resources more important. As a result, a natural evaporation-condensation process such as a solar distillation system can be operated as a practical renewable desalination technique in remote arid areas like oil-rich countries who are very interested in implementing renewable energy desalination system. In this research, different types of carbonaceous materials that are similar to outside environment conditions have been used in the laboratory to determine a better evaporation rate of saline water. Different concentrations of saline water were tested in this study to show the comparable results and determine the better one. After performing several experiments under sunlight simulation, it was found that an evaporation rate of 5.37 2 Kg m hour is achievable by using carbon felt in 3.5% saline water, which represents the average salt concentration of the world's ocean water. A cost analysis performed in this research has shown that within six months, $1,076 can be made from a one-square-meter desalination plant to validate the total method in certain areas where the surface temperature is very high. Finally, with the help of this study, it has been proven that the ocean's salt water can be turned into a blessing for human kind due to the scarcity of pure drinking water.
Thesis (M.S.)--Wichita State University, College of Engineering, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering