Can a Peltier cooler be used to extract moisture from the air using off-the-grid power?
I was wondering how to get water if my local water utility company failed to provide safe and clean water.
In the video above, I also show how you can salvage a 12V fan from a dead computer’s power supply unit.
Parts used in experiment:
- Peltier cooler (also called TEC or Thermo Electric Cooler)
- liquid CPU cooler
- portable 12V battery
- temperature gun
- 12V cooling fan salvaged from computer power supply
- thermal paste
My conclusion after testing this is that yes, Peltier coolers can extract water out of the air. However, I question if this way of getting water is practical or economical. In my area, my time would be better spent getting water in other ways:
- Digging a well
- Capturing the water from an air conditioning unit
- Distilling water from the lake across the street from my house
- Distilling water from the creek that runs through my property
- Capturing rain water
Because water is abundant where I am located, I will stop testing Peltier coolers for the purpose of capturing water. (Not sure why exactly I felt compelled to do these tests anyhow… was mostly curious. Oh yeah, I did have an idea that maybe I could set up a drip irrigation system with these in my garden with a solar panel attached to them. No need to run pipes and plumbing if the Peltier coolers could drip water directly over plants on my property.)
More Water Condensation
One idea that could improve this design is to attach a metal plate as a heat sink to the cold side. The cold temp would be distributed over a larger surface area. If the plate is big enough, we would see no ice because the temperature would not fall low enough. We probably just need the temp of the plate to be at or below the dew point to begin the condensation. This would result in no ice, but probably more water flow.
Anyway, it works and I had fun with this experiment. Next, I’ll try generating electricty with these thermoelectric devices.