BioDesign – Fog Water

Bio Design Fog Water
Ambience; water dripping
We live in a world surrounded by 3.8 billion years of evolutionary history, and it’s providing us with a living library of nature-inspired design solutions to all kinds of challenges. I’m Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

Kennedy: I think going forward in this century, there are myriad, big problems that human beings will face. One in particular is access to water. Biology has a host of amazing ways of managing, filtering, procuring water for its own use and consumption. If we’re are able to somehow learn from those processes and translate those through engineering and design, we could end up solving for some of the most basic human needs that people face.

Brook Kennedy is an Associate professor of industrial design at Virginia Tech.

Kennedy: Just to give you an example, some students had looked very closely at some spider webs on a local running path on a foggy day, and had observed how these spider web fibers were also very good at converting the fog water into water droplets, and wondered is there some way we can recreate this effect on more of an architectural scale in emulation of these spiders to create drinking water?
I’m working with some collaborators in engineering in trying to optimize the geometry of these fibers in such a way to increase the efficiency of fog water collection. It’s still in the works but we’re very optimistic that we’re moving towards creating something that could really bring drinking water, especially to communities that have none in certain parts of the world that are both very dry and also coastal.

We’ll hear more on bio-inspired designs in future programs. I’m Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

BioDesign - Fog Water

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Air Date:01/11/2017
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Bio Design Fog Water
Ambience; water dripping
We live in a world surrounded by 3.8 billion years of evolutionary history, and it's providing us with a living library of nature-inspired design solutions to all kinds of challenges. I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

Kennedy: I think going forward in this century, there are myriad, big problems that human beings will face. One in particular is access to water. Biology has a host of amazing ways of managing, filtering, procuring water for its own use and consumption. If we're are able to somehow learn from those processes and translate those through engineering and design, we could end up solving for some of the most basic human needs that people face.

Brook Kennedy is an Associate professor of industrial design at Virginia Tech.

Kennedy: Just to give you an example, some students had looked very closely at some spider webs on a local running path on a foggy day, and had observed how these spider web fibers were also very good at converting the fog water into water droplets, and wondered is there some way we can recreate this effect on more of an architectural scale in emulation of these spiders to create drinking water?
I'm working with some collaborators in engineering in trying to optimize the geometry of these fibers in such a way to increase the efficiency of fog water collection. It's still in the works but we're very optimistic that we're moving towards creating something that could really bring drinking water, especially to communities that have none in certain parts of the world that are both very dry and also coastal.

We'll hear more on bio-inspired designs in future programs. I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.