EDDI – Eletrodialysis Desalinator for Desalination

Smart Electrodialysis
Electrodialysis is a method of desalination where you use electricity to move the ions of a salt into different channels of water in a parallel stack of flat channels. It has benefits over reverse osmosis in that it doesn’t use plumping systems that need to be watertight under high pressure, and has a longer maintenance schedule.

By using electrodialysis, the system can also be made “smarter” by supplying a specific amount of power to get a specific salinity. This method is especially useful to farmers who often have a financial tradeoff between energy use and water quality. Oftentimes, surface water is cheaper to use, but has a high salinity. Groundwater may be of higher quality, but is expensive to pump. At times, neither option may be viable as they can both be highly saline in times of severe drought.

Electrodialysis is well fitted to using technology to increase the efficiency, but any desalination approach can be made more efficient if the application doesn’t require perfectly unsalty water.

My attempt and results
I gathered a team of 6 people all in different fields for a technical challenge on the topic. We went on to win Grand Prize. Our steps are outlined here: http://imgur.com/gallery/GhS7q We intend to improve/simplify the design and supply more detailed steps. We are committed to keeping the technology and our learnings open, as we anticipate desalination will be an increasingly necessary technology in years to come.