A Scottsdale Startup’s Product Uses Solar Energy to Make Water Out of Thin Air


By Michelle Talsma Everson

Photos Courtesy of Zero Mass Water

Water is a precious resource in the desert; there’s not an abundance of it, so desert dwellers are urged to conserve every drop. What is abundant here though, is solar energy. So if a product could harvest solar energy and turn it into water, it would be an ideal match. According to Scottsdale startup Zero Mass Water and its CEO, Dr. Cody Friesen, that product is SOURCE.

“Zero Mass Water is a leading renewable water company whose product, SOURCE, is a drinking-water solar panel that uses solar energy to make water out of air, free from infrastructure,” Friesen said. “Installed on three continents in seven countries, SOURCE is democratizing water worldwide.”

In addition to being Zero Mass Water’s CEO and founder, Friesen is an associate professor of materials science at Arizona State University. He explained that the intellectual property behind SOURCE lies in the specialized materials developed to efficiently capture pure water from the air and the mechanisms used to produce pure water from those materials.

“This technology is years in the making and our incredible product is the only purely infrastructure-free source of great-tasting drinking water,” he said.

So how does it work? According to Friesen, the device uses its technology to passively collect humidity in the air. That humidity is then turned into filtered water that will come out of your tap or any water source of your choice. Each SOURCE panel has a 30-liter reservoir, is fairly low maintenance and has a 10-year shelf life, according to the company.

In Arizona, humidity is typically low. However, Friesen says that is not an issue. “We have panels deployed in Arizona today and have proven that SOURCE makes water from air in even the most arid climates,” he said.

For those who are interested in installing SOURCE panels, the price varies depending on home or business size and needs. According to Zero Mass Water’s website, a primary panel is $2,900 and costs go up from there as the buyer’s needs fluctuate. The company describes it as a very customizable process.

In time, Friesen hopes that this technology becomes a game changer for sourcing water.

“By providing water independent of infrastructure, SOURCE transforms how people everywhere access the water they drink—enabling individual ownership for the first time,” he said. “As the world’s first truly renewable water, SOURCE offsets the water waste of municipal and the plastic waste of bottled, becoming the only drinking water choice without negative consequences. For customers in the U.S., SOURCE provides great-tasting water they can feel good about drinking.”

To learn more about Zero Mass Water and SOURCE, visit zeromasswater.com.

Michelle Talsma Everson is a freelance writer, editor, public relations consultant and mom based in Phoenix. With degrees in both journalism and PR from Northern Arizona University, she writes for several Valley publications. Find out more at mteverson.com.

Read more articles about energy at greenlivingaz.com/energy.

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