Power, Fresh Water, and Food from Cold, Deep Sea Water

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Science  12 Oct 1973:
Vol. 182, Issue 4108, pp. 121-125
DOI: 10.1126/science.182.4108.121


Many times more solar heat energy accumulates in the vast volume of warm tropic seas than that produced by all of our power plants. The looming energy crisis causes a renewal of interest in utilizing this stored solar heat to give, in addition to electric power, vast quantities of fresh water. Warm surface water, when evaporated, generates steam, to power a turbine, then fresh water when the steam is condensed by the cold water.

A great increase in revenues over that from power and fresh water is shown by a substantial mariculture pilot plant. Deep sea water contains large quantities of nutrients. These feed algae which feed shellfish, ultimately shrimps and lobsters, in shallow ponds. Wastes grow seaweed of value; and combined revenues from desalination, power generation, and mariculture will give substantial profit.