Water-saving sunlight and snowflake-paint 2.0 – IMPRESSO #37

In this IMPRESSO edition: Solving global crises with water-saving sunlight and snowflake-paint 2.0, and some mighty seconds for Houston.


Water-saving sunlight

Nearly 20% of the world’s population lives in areas of high to extreme water vulnerability. Now, a potential solution is on the rise! Researchers of the University of South Australia substantially improved the efficiency of photothermal evaporators with a unique technique that not only operates at 100% efficiency for the solar input but also manages to extract up to another 170% energy from the bulk water! This process derives freshwater from salt or contaminated water and delivers between 10 and 20 liters of freshwater per square meter per day. Their system is much cheaper than other existing technologies like reverse osmosis, requires virtually no maintenance and no technical expertise is necessary to operate it. Bottom line: We are one step closer to solve our global freshwater crisis! Read here


Snowflake-paint 2.0

It’s the result of six years of research: The whitest paint ever created. That research of engineers of Purdue University sounds not like a big deal. But it has the potential to fight global warming for good! While we were already “wowed” by the introduction of “snowflake-paint” that may cool the earth, the newly developed formulation of the ultra-white paint can reflect up to 98.1% of sunlight with infrared heat being sent away at the same time. That makes it not only the whitest on record but also by far the coolest. One uses it on the roof area of about 1,000 sqft. And it creates cooling power equivalent to that of air conditioners used by most houses. Researchers expect that coating buildings with their new paint will cool them off enough to reduce the need for air condition, decrease energy consumption and thus curb global warming! Read more


Houston, we don’t have a problem!

On Monday, April 19, 2021, mankind wrote aviation history, 117 years after the Wright brothers did on earth. For the first time, we were able to operate an aircraft on another planet! This has been believed to be an impossible task for many decades. A small solar-powered fully autonomous helicopter, piloted by onboard guidance, navigation, and control systems running algorithms was developed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory at Caltech. And it recorded a total of 39.1 seconds of flight on Mars. Sounds fancy. Is fancy! This successful mission will pave the way for further exploration. Who knows what we will discover next on the Red Planet 😉 Read more