"A Desalination Battery"

Pasta, M.: Wessells, C.D., Cui, Y., La Mantia, F.; Nano Letters, 01/23/12.

Additional Authors: Wessells, C.D., Cui, Y., La Mantia, F.


Water desalination is an important approach to provide fresh water around the world, although its high energy consumption, and thus high cost, call for new, efficient technology. Here, we demonstrate the novel concept of a “desalination battery”, which operates by performing cycles in reverse on our previously reported mixing entropy battery. Rather than generating electricity from salinity differences, as in mixing entropy batteries, desalination batteries use an electrical energy input to extract sodium and chloride ions from seawater and to generate fresh water. The desalination battery is comprised by a Na2-xMn5O10 nanorod positive electrode and Ag/AgCl negative electrode. Here, we demonstrate an energy consumption of 0.29 Wh l–1 for the removal of 25% salt using this novel desalination battery, which is promising when compared to reverse osmosis ( 0.2 Wh l–1), the most efficient technique presently available.