Water is one of the most important things every human being needs to survive. However, not everyone has access to clean drinking water. Plus, with global warming and climate change, an increasing amount of countries are experiencing extreme droughts. So, if people need water so much, why can’t we just make it? Humans have made artificial meat, and even artificial versions of ourselves! And with chemistry knowledge in hand, we could easily combine hydrogen and oxygen and— boom!— clean sparkling water.
However, the process is not as simple (and safe) as it sounds.
First off, mixing two hydrogen atoms and an oxygen atom will not create water— there would need to be a sudden burst of energy to get their orbits to link. You will need a flame (or some sparks) to make water. This is super easy, considering that hydrogen is extremely flammable and fires burn brighter with oxygen.
Hold up— did I tell you this would also cause an explosion?
In May 1937, a blimp (a type of airship), that was filled with hydrogen to keep it afloat, approached New Jersey to land after a long journey. Static electricity caused the hydrogen to spark— and the plentiful oxygen did not help the situation. The hydrogen exploded, creating a ball of fire that swallowed up the blimp and destroyed it in less than a minute (and also creating a lot of water in the process).
It is okay to make water with this method in small quantities, but not in large amounts. Thankfully, there are much safer (but less exciting) ways to make water. Like cooling water vapor so they condense and turn into water droplets.
An Australian inventor created the Whisson windmill to make water. A pair of American inventors used the same concept to make AquaMagic, a special camper. They either put refrigerant on windmill blades or refrigerate coils that cool air and cause water vapor to condense so water droplets can be formed and collected for use.
Or, if you have the government on your side, you may want to try cloud seeding. Cloud seeding is the process of firing silver iodide into storm clouds so that they rain. China has used this to good effect, but in Britain, it caused terrible floods that claimed the lives of more than thirty people. One area even experienced 250 times the amount of normal rainfall! Not the most foolproof plan.
Maybe we don’t have to make new water at all… but just make small inventions that purify dirty water anytime and anywhere?
There is a special straw called Lifestraw that filters water so you can drink it. The membrane micro filters inside have microscopic pores that only clean water can pass through, blocking out most parasites and dirt.
Humankind has thrived for centuries due to their ingenuity and creativity. Hopefully , we can invent many things that can solve global water problems so everybody can access clean water.
Sources: https://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/earth/geophysics/manufacture-water2.htm https://www.lifestraw.com/pages/how-our-products-work#technology
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