American Chemical Society
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Portable Trilayer Photothermal Structure for Hybrid Energy Harvesting and Synergic Water Purification

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journal contribution
posted on 2019-10-08, 20:14 authored by Yaoxin Zhang, Sai Kishore Ravi, Lin Yang, Jayraj Vinubhai Vaghasiya, Lakshmi Suresh, Ignatius Tan, Swee Ching Tan
Many exciting developments have unfolded on the recently emerged research topic of solar-driven interfacial evaporation, which is a promising technology for water purification. However, the sole heat source, i.e., solar energy, has put a limit on the maximum achievable evaporation rate. Therefore, to boost the evaporation beyond the limit, we here in this work have put forth a new photothermal system with a trilayered structure (TLS) that is capable of simultaneously harvesting hybrid energy in addition to solar energy for enhanced evaporation. A carbon-based material with broad-band light absorption that can be facilely synthesized through dehydration effect is also reported. Demonstrations of TLS evaporator by recovering the free thermal energy from sources like ground surficial heat and waste heat from laboratory facility and building walls together with solar radiation have been carried out. A remarkable synergic evaporation rate exceeding 2.4 kg m–2 h–1 is achieved, and moreover, the hybrid heating makes evaporation independent of solar intermittency. Besides, a TLS integrated hybrid water-purification bottle with outstanding portability is further demonstrated, which is expected to be of great significance to the development of mobile water purification and safe water security in the future.