Improving atmospheric water production yield: Enabling multiple water harvesting cycles with nano sorbent

Renyuan Li, Yusuf Shi, Mengchun Wu, Seunghyun Hong, Peng Wang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

188 Citations (Scopus)


Clean water shortage has long been a challenge in remote and landlocked communities especially for the impoverished. Atmospheric water is now considered as an unconventional but accessible fresh water source and sorption-based atmospheric water generator (AWG) has been successfully demonstrated a reliable way of harvesting atmospheric water. The water vapor sorbents with high water uptake capacity and especially fast vapor sorption/desorption kinetics have become the bottleneck to a desirable clean water productivity in AWG. In this work, we developed a new nano vapor sorbent composed of a nano carbon hollow capsule with LiCl inside the void core. The sorbent can capture water vapor from ambient air as much as 100% of its own weight under RH 60% within 3 h and quickly release the sorbed water within just half hour under 1 kW/m2 sunlight irradiation. A batch-mode AWG device was able to conduct 3 sorption/desorption cycles within 10 h during one day test in the outdoor condition and produced 1.6 kgwater/kgsorbent. A prototype of continuous AWG device was designed, fabricated, and successfully demonstrated, hinting a possible way of large-scale deployment of AWG for practical purposes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104255
JournalNano Energy
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020


  • Atmospheric water harvesting
  • Nanocapsule
  • Photothermal material
  • Vapor sorbent

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Materials Science
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Improving atmospheric water production yield: Enabling multiple water harvesting cycles with nano sorbent'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this