Crystal Lagoons has developed a technology that enables large bodies of water to be maintained with excellent water quality and at a very low cost. They can be built on the side of a commercial or residential facility in order to provide a stable media for heat transfer with Heat Pump systems and, therefore, provide air conditioning or heating to the facilities at very low costs, saving 50% in energy consumption compared to conventional systems.
Conventional air conditioning and heating systems (HVAC) operate by transferring heat to the outside air through heat pump systems. However, water has about four times more capacity for heat transfer; therefore, using water for cooling or heating spaces or facilities is more efficient than using air.
The Crystal Lagoons® solution provides turquoise, clear lagoons with excellent water quality at very low costs that can be built next to residential communities or commercial facilities (such as hotels, airports, etc.). This is ideal for supplying high-quality water for heat transfer and for providing air conditioning or heating as well to such facilities, all at low cost and generally saving up to 50% of energy consumption compared to conventional HVAC systems. Such lagoons can also be used for recreational purposes, enhancing the local landscape as the World’s Top Amenity.
As a sub-product of the sustainable cooling system, where a cooling lagoon is connected to a thermal power plant that operates in a closed circuit, high-quality hot water is generated. Such hot water flow can be used directly from the lagoon to generate fresh water through a Membrane Distillation process without requiring additional energy consumption. This technology promises to be a major breakthrough for the world.
Crystal Lagoons has developed a revolutionary technology for using large amounts of thermal energy wasted in industrial processes, which can generate a major breakthrough worldwide by producing fresh water with no energy.
In the world, more than 50,000 power plants and other industrial facilities currently waste huge amounts of energy, mainly through their cooling systems. Such enormous amounts of energy are lost in the form of large volumes of water at relatively low temperatures, referred to as “low-grade waste heat” or LGWH. The total amount of thermal energy that is lost is very high, and it is estimated that the waste heat from current power plants and other industrial facilities in the world is up to 10 times higher than the energy produced by renewable energy plants (such as photovoltaic and wind power plants). Also, the World Economic Forum has announced that the water crisis is the #1 long-term global risk based on its impact on society.
Crystal Lagoons has developed a technology that allows large amounts of waste thermal energy from industrial processes to be used in order to produce fresh water through membrane distillation, all at low costs, providing a possible solution to the most important problem in the world currently.
Membrane distillation is a desalination technology driven by a temperature gradient that allows fresh water to be extracted from hot salt water. The technology consists of water vapor passing through the membrane, forced by the temperature difference of the water that flows on both sides of the membrane. This technology requires hot seawater of high purity to avoid the membrane getting clogged, and to maintain the efficiency of the process. The biggest limitation to expanding this technology relates to the difficulty in obtaining large volumes of hot seawater of high quality and at low cost. However, this is solved by Crystal Lagoons ® technology that provides large volumes of excellent quality water for desalination purposes, and at low costs.
Crystal Lagoons® technology can also be used to maintain excellent water quality in pump storage systems, enabling stability and continuity to be provided in electricity generation at renewable power plants, such as wind farms or solar plants. When there is available renewable energy, the water is pumped to a high-level lagoon, storing potential energy. Then, when electricity is required, the water is discharged to a low-level lagoon, producing energy through a hydroelectric turbine.
Pump storage systems store and generate energy by moving water between two reservoirs at different elevations. Such systems provide electricity generation stability and continuity at renewable power plants with variable electricity generation because the natural resource used is not permanent, like solar or wind power plants that depend on the sun and wind, respectively. In such cases, water is pumped from a low-level lagoon to a high-level lagoon through renewable electricity during low electricity demand.
Water is released from the high-level lagoons to provide electricity during the night or periods of low wind, and electricity is generated, providing constant electricity output.
By using Crystal Lagoons® technology, excellent water quality is maintained in the water reservoirs used in pump storage systems, eliminating biofouling and minimizing equipment maintenance.
Crystal Lagoons® technology allows seawater to be pre-treated at low cost through a treatment lagoon, providing high-quality water for feeding the reverse osmosis process. This method considerably reduces investment and operational costs at the pretreatment stage, generating an efficient and sustainable alternative to current pre-treatment processes while creating a high-quality water reservoir that allows recreational use.
Reverse osmosis is a widely used technology that can produce freshwater from saltwater (seawater or brackish water). The process is driven by a pressure gradient between saltwater and freshwater flows, separated by a semi-permeable membrane. When saltwater exceeds the system’s osmotic pressure, it produces pure water flow through the membrane, generating fresh water. However, for this process to operate properly, high-quality seawater must be used to ensure membranes are not clogged and damaged. Therefore, the highest cost of the reverse osmosis process occurs in the complex and expensive seawater pre-treatment required to obtain high-quality water.
This technology allows, at very low costs, surface runoff water to be purified through a treatment lagoon, where the water is collected during the rainy season and after the lagoon treatment, the water is rapidly infiltrated into underground aquifers through wells, to be used during droughts or in the dry season.
The world is facing an important problem: water scarcity. During rainy seasons, most of the water that falls to the ground goes unused, and ends up being wasted.
An efficient way to take advantage of currently lost rainwater is to store the water underground through direct aquifer infiltration. This process consists of collecting surface runoff rainwater, injecting it through wells, and storing it underground. While this process is efficient, it has a big limitation: to directly inject collected water into the aquifers and store it underground, the water must be of the highest quality.
Crystal Lagoons has developed a technology that allows surface runoff water to be treated and purified at very low costs through a pristine clear lagoon so that water can rapidly infiltrate the underground aquifers through wells, complying with strict infiltration regulations. Subsequently, the water stored in aquifers can be pumped to the surface for agriculture, mining, and sanitary purposes. This provides a reliable and high-quality water supply during drought or water shortage.
The great advantage of this technology over reservoirs is that it does not require flooding large land areas. It does not produce evaporation or deterioration of water quality.
This technology allows the sustainable construction and maintenance of seawater purification systems on a large scale and at a very low cost, for mining purposes. In this way, a high-quality water reservoir is created, and it can be used for recreational purposes, benefiting local communities.
Freshwater scarcity is a big problem for the world’s mining industry. The mining sector has reacted to the problem by adopting several actions that optimize water consumption through operational improvements and studying new alternatives for using different types of water. As a result, mining companies increasingly use seawater for their processes, transporting seawater through long pipelines from the ocean to the mines. However, seawater has a high organic content, which causes biofouling and leads to several problems associated with its transportation, such as piping deterioration, load reductions, and expensive coatings, among others.
Crystal Lagoons has developed and patented a low-cost technology for the eco-friendly purification of seawater through man-made lagoons that completely eliminate biofouling and eliminates organic matter that currently attaches itself to pipelines, generating high maintenance costs and associated downtime. This technology considerably reduces investment and operational costs by replacing current high-cost treatment systems and generating an efficient alternative to current processes.
This patented technology allows the sustainable construction and maintenance of seawater purification systems on a large scale and at a low cost, competently replacing current water treatment technologies. The technology also generates a high-quality water reservoir that can be used for recreational purposes, benefiting local communities.
The Crystal Lagoons® city is a conceptual project that brings together all the different recreational and industrial applications of the technologies Crystal Lagoons offers, in both the public and private sectors, and for local communities to benefit from clean energy and water at very low costs, solving large global problems, while enjoying all the benefits of an idyllic beach lifestyle that Crystal Lagoons® technology provides.
The Crystal Lagoons® city includes several pristine clear lagoons with different applications: solving problems of pollution, producing freshwater without energy, improving the quality of life for people around the world, generating a safe recreational amenity without the use of land, providing continuity to renewable power plants, reducing pre-treatment costs for reverse osmosis processes, purifying seawater at low costs, and generating high-quality water reservoirs for their use in times of drought.
In the image, we can see the main park with a pristine clear lagoon and beach life as a main attraction that allows the safe practice of water sports while providing air conditioning and heating for a large number of nearby residential and commercial buildings, through heat pump systems. We can also see a floating lagoon that enables developers to take advantage of lakes and water bodies with poor water quality, creating a unique attraction that enables recreational uses such as swimming and sailing in a safe environment without using additional land.
A sustainable cooling lagoon can also be found in the industrial area, whose function is to cool the electricity generation process of a thermal power plant. The high quality hot water (by-product of the cooling system) is then sent to a membrane distillation process, where fresh water is produced without the use of additional energy, which can be used as drinking water, for irrigation, or other applications.
Furthermore, we can use this technology in a pump storage system for the pre-treatment of seawater for reverse osmosis systems and, finally, for artificial aquifer recharge processes, creating underground water reservoirs that can be used in times of drought.