Symbiotic Systems for Energy, Water, and Food
Pappalardo Professor of Mechanical Engineering
Director, Experimental Study Group (ESG)
MIT Department of Mechanical Engineering
By collocating machines, support systems, inputs and outputs can be shared with the potential to reduce overall system cost thereby helping to enable adoption of environmentally friendly systems. In particular, the oceans represent a vast resource (and challenge) for humanity: Offshore wind turbines can harvest wind energy, and their base structures can also serve as platforms for aquaculture systems, uranium-from seawater harvesting systems, and wave energy systems. Solar PV and wind turbines whose excess feeds pumped storage hydropower systems collocated with reverse osmosis plants located near the ocean could provide all the power and fresh water for many coastal regions such as Los Angeles, Lima, Eilat/Aqaba, the eastern UAE, and northern Iran (including Tehran) for example.