Inspiration through hydration :: UTEC’s water-producing billboard

21 Posted by - March 2, 2013 - Art


This is incredible engineering. This is incredible advertising. This is incredible, period.

Let’s get some background: the Peruvian capital of Lima is the second largest city to be built in a desert in the world. In terms of population, it’s as big as London – sitting at over 7 million souls.

Atmospheric instability means they’re working with an average rainfall of 0.51 inches of rain That’s not very much water and, annually, water supplies suffer. Yet the region has 98% atmospheric humidity.

The University of Technology and Engineering down in Lima went on a student recruitment drive recently. Most universities polish up their website, produce reams of promotional material, and send out mass mailings to potential students. Not UTEC.

UTEC decided to build a shiny new billboard (complete with an awesome use of neon) using a unique technology based around reverse osmosis to rip water straight from the air.

In 3 months it’s already pulled 9450 liters of water straight out of the atmosphere. That’s about 25 gallons a day… and it’s far better quality H2O than the polluted well water that people would be drinking overwise.

In an age where modern advances in advertising seem to be all about tracking the consumer – what are you buying? Where are you going? – this billboard just asks “want a drink?” and hopes to inspire the next generation of engineers. That’s refreshing… in every way possible.