Arizona Patent of the Month – December 2021

Container farming is a growing agricultural industry which sees produce grown in recycled shipping containers rather than the soil. This means the crop field can be placed anywhere with flat, stable ground, rather than being limited to agricultural fields. This industry has seen benefits such as ease of transportation, reduced maintenance costs, and reduced impact from the surrounding environment as the produce is shielded from weather conditions. However, they have seen disadvantages wherever a continuous source of water is not readily available. Shelter from weather means shelter from rain, cutting out the natural source of water that most farms enjoy.

Zero Mass Water, Inc., an Arizona-based company, has developed a system capable of generating water for these container farms. The system relies on plant transpiration or fungi respiration to generate water.

The company is already known for their technology which can produce safe, clean drinking water from solar energy and ambient air moisture. 

This new water generation system also uses a solar panel to power it, but relies on the process fluid obtained from plants or fungi and cycling it through the system to turn it into usable water. Throughout this process, nutrients can also be added into the water through a series of hydroponic and aquaponic systems and delivered to the plants. This all happens in a closed loop system, using a heat generator and desiccation device to process the respired fluid into water. This provides an ideal solution for agriculture practices – like container farming – which may have reduced access to water.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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