Passive interfacial cooling-induced sustainable electricity–water cogeneration

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-100
Journal / PublicationNature Water
Online published8 Jan 2024
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024


The utilization of solar energy for electricity and water generation is widely considered as a sustainable solution for water scarcity and electricity shortages. Here we present a rationally designed hybrid system based on the passive interfacial cooling (PIC) strategy. The PIC region within the system intensifies energy exchange between the power generation and water generation modules, thereby boosting the utilization of waste heat and latent heat from the hybrid modules and minimizing the energy loss to air. As a result, the PIC-induced cogenerator exhibited a superior power density of 1.5 W m−2 and an outstanding water evaporation rate of 2.81 kg m−2 h−1 under 1 Sun illumination, which were 328% and 158% higher than those of devices without the PIC effect. The system also exhibited excellent salt rejection ability, stability, durability and applicability under various harsh conditions, demonstrating its potential for practical applications. The effectiveness of the PIC strategy in enhancing photovoltaic-based power generation systems has also been established, resulting in an increase in power density from 55.7 W m−2 to 75 W m−2. This study provides insights into the design of power–water cogenerators and advances their application with multiple natural energy sources for high-efficiency power–water cogeneration.

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited 2024