How to Convert Seawater to Drinking Water


Obtaining fresh water from salt water is commonly performed by mimicking a natural process. The use of a solar still will allow you to create drinking water in the same way that the sun helps to draw water into the clouds, where it condenses as rain. The water you collect through this process will be free of salt and ready to drink.

Things You'll Need

  • Bowl
  • Glass
  • Sea water
  • Plastic wrap
  • Rock

Place a large bowl in an area that receives a lot of sun.

Set a glass in the center of the bowl. The top of the glass must be lower than the edge of the bowl.

Pour sea water (or water to which you have added salt) into the bowl but not into the glass. The level of the water must be lower than the top of the glass.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and secure it with tape so the plastic wrap is tight like a drum.

Place a rock in the center of the plastic wrap, directly above the glass, depressing the plastic wrap slightly.

Remove the rock and plastic wrap after a few hours.

Drink the water from the glass.

Tips & Warnings

  • While the water from your still will be free of salt, it is recommended that you use some type of water purification tablet to ensure that no bacteria remain in the water. Information on where to obtain these tablets can be found in the Resources section.
  • When outdoors, remember to always carry enough water for your activities. Solar stills are not meant to be a replacement for carrying the appropriate amount of water.

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