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Israeli device takes the thirst out of war zones

Monday, March 05, 2012 - 02:18

March 6 - An Israeli startup has developed a portable device that generates large amounts of water from desert air. The company says the system will offer troops in conflict zones a cheap and safe way to stay hydrated. Rinat Harash reports.

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STORY: Supplying water in battle zones is expensive and sometimes deadly. Armies around the world spend millions of dollars transporting water to thirsty troops on the front lines, often under extremely dangerous conditions. (SOUNDBITE) (English) WATER-GEN CHAIRMAN AND CO-CEO ARYE KOHAVI SAYING: "Convoys are attacked during the water transportation and we can produce the water on spot where it's needed, we are saving all the logistic footprint of bringing the water." Arye Kohavi, the CEO of Israeli tech firm Water-Gen says instead of transporting water into conflict zones - he has developed a portable device that can simply make it out of air. Kohavi says the system, which can be tacked on to a tank, is capable of producing 20-60 litters per day (5-16 gallons/day), depending on environmental conditions. It works on the same principles of an air conditioner, drawing on the ambient humidity in the air to produce clean drinking water. (SOUNDBITE) (English) WATER-GEN CHAIRMAN AND CO-CEO ARYE KOHAVI SAYING: "The air is coming into the system full of humidity, we extract the water and throw the air out. The water, we are cleaning the water, adding minerals and everything needed and then pour cold water to the soldiers." Kobi Marom, a reservist colonel in the Israeli army, says he isn't surprised that Water-Gen's device has drawn interest from military forces around the world. (SOUNDBITE) (English) COLONEL KOBI MAROM (RES.), ISRAELI ARMY COMMANDER IN THE FORMER OCCUPIED SOUTHERN LEBANON AREA AND EXPERT IN GUERILLA WARFARE, SAYING: "I think that this technology will give the IDF and other military forces all over the world that operate against guerilla a lot of advantages, because food and water that's needs those troops over the desert all over the Middle East, is critical for them to operate for a long time." Arye Kohavi believes that portable water generation will become more prevalent in the future and not just on the battle field. Kohavi hopes his device will give organizations like the United Nations a better way to provide water to the people that need it most. Rinat Harash, Reuters.

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Israeli device takes the thirst out of war zones

Monday, March 05, 2012 - 02:18