The Warkawater Tower is one of the most unusual structures you’ll see in the Ethiopian landscape.
At its 30 feet height and 13 feet width, this tower isn’t half as tall as its namesake tree which can reach up to 75 feet in height, but it’s still impressive.
This tower of latticed bamboo lined entirely with an orange mesh from polyester isn’t there for artistic purposes, although you may think it is.
Rather, it’s been designed to help create water out of the air and enable continuous and sustainable water for the developing countries.
Who Created the Stunning Warkawater Tower?
Designed by Arturo Vittori and his team from Architecture and Vision, it’s a tower made to harvest water from fog, dew, and rain.
This doesn’t come as a surprise: people have been doing it for as long as we needed water, usually with air wells.
Built as stone structures, air wells are capable of collecting the moisture from the air and then funnel it into a basin where it’s collected.
This tower functions in a similar way-the mesh catches the moisture and directs it into the tank that’s accessed through a spout.
According to the tests the company did in a lab in Italy, this tower is capable of collecting 13 to 26.4 gallons of water per day.
Although it’s less than what we flush away on the daily, it’s still a major amount considering it’s in a country where around 60 million people don’t have access to potable water.
What Does the Newest Update of the Tower Offer?
The tower’s newest update features a bamboo, rather than juncus, exterior.
The top of the tower contains reflective pieces that serve to deter birds. The orange mesh was doubled and thus, more water is being collected as fog penetrates it.
MIT has been working on a similar fog harvesting tech inspired by the Namib beetle. Although the collection of rain is pretty straightforward, catching dew is more complex.
Namely, dew forms in a specific period when the temperature of the surface reduces relative to the surrounding air. It’s therefore most common between nightfall and sunrise.
Vittori is focused on material research for the tower’s funnel (between the tank and the mesh) that will be able to drop heat as fast as possible so that the small window of dew production can be optimized.
What Is the Price for a WarkaWater Tower?
This tower costs around $1000 to be produced and doesn’t require electricity for the process. Vittori explains that it takes less than an hour to assemble the five modules and make the tower.
It’s easily packed and moved according to the needs. The goal of this tower is to become an efficient production machine.
Enriching the landscape with these towers is about more than functionality. It’s also about architecture.
Vittori wanted to create an iconic construction that has social capacity.
Namely, when its canopies stretch out reminding of a peplum skirt, these towers could be used as a socializing area where people would also shelter from the sun, just like they would be doing it under a leafy Warka tree.