Lockheed Martin Corp finds a way to cheaply desalinate seawater

It seems LMC has taken a break from making stuff that goes boom long enough to make something that does not go boom.graphene


Even in Perth, we are aware of the impact of water supply issues is having and we have an expensive desalination plant to prove it. There are even people saying that the next wars will be fought over oil and water and Lockheed Martin seems to have come up with an answer that is based on pure carbon. Carbon molecules are arranged into insanely thin membranes known as graphene capable of filtering out impurities larger than a nanometre which is a BILLIONTH of a metre. This allows water molecules to pass through but stop other molecules like salt. This ultra thin filter requires 100 times less energy to force the water through the filter than conventional methods meaning the production of drinking water is well within reach of even developing nations. The key to its success is the sheer thinness which is an atom thick which allows the substance being filtered out to simply pop though the membrane which under the microscope looks like chicken wire. Best of all, this technology can be used to retrofit existing filter assemblies and we may see this commercially available as early as 2014. This filter technology is also expected to have impact in dialysis and cleaning up chemical spils.

For me, the best thing is that we see a company usually focussed on blowing things up now looking at ways to reduce the possibility of conflict in the first place.