Deserts have plenty of sunlight, and coastal areas for such regions have to make use of energy intensive desalination plants to fulfill their needs for potable water. IBM has got together with Saudi Arabia’s King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, to create a desalination system powered by the sun.
The proposed system would pump out 7.9 million gallons of water everyday, and would be able to meet demands of 100,000 people. To be constructed in Al Khafji, Saudi Arabia, the plant will rely on concentrating photovoltaic arrays to generate enough energy to power its operations.
The 10 megawatts solar farm to be built for this purpose will be able to magnify sunlight on a solar cell by up to 1500 times. That’s nearly three times of what conventional systems are capable of. IBM will use a “liquid metal thermal interface” to cope with the heat generated and to keep the system running. If all goes well, a pilot plant will be ready for action by the end of this year.