Plasmonic Nanoparticle Enhanced Seawater Desalination
To combat the growing need for accessible freshwater sources across the globe, new technologies that don’t rely on fossil fuels are ideal. Additionally, these technologies should be easily implemented in the developing communities that need them most for lower cost than the current options. The purification of seawater, also known as desalination is a highly attractive method due to the large amount of easily accessible saltwater, though current methods are highly fossil-fuel dependent. A new class of materials to be investigated, known as plasmonic nanoparticles, offer a unique solution to take the process off the grid. Such nanomaterials can effectively absorb sunlight and convert it directly to localized heat, making the overall conversion of water to steam using solar energy much more efficient. Creating devices based on this idea would benefit all parties involved to stand-out as innovators in the renewable technology sector.