Warka Water towers harvest drinkable water from the air

In this exclusive movie, Italian architect Arturo Vittori explains how his wooden Warka Water structures can provide clean drinking water for rural communities in the developing world. Through the Warka Water project, Vittori is investigating alternative water sources for remote communities without access to running water. “Warka Water is a philosophy looking at the environment and different possibilities to collect and harvest water in a sustainable way,” he explains in the movie, which Dezeen filmed at his studio in the countryside outside Rome. Vittori is currently developing a lightweight wooden tower – which is quick and cheap to build without any power tools – that harvests water from the atmosphere via condensation. The tower consists of a bamboo frame supporting a mesh polyester material inside. Rain, fog and dew condenses against the mesh and trickles down a funnel into a reservoir at the base of the structure. A fabric canopy shades the lower sections of the tower to prevent the collected water from evaporating. “Warka Water is currently represented by a tower that reaches up to the sky to collect moisture from the air and brings it down by gravity to the people,” Vittori says. The performance of the towers varies depending on the weather, but Vittori’s aim is to create a structure that would enable the community to extract up to 100 litres of water a day without the reservoir running dry.