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Membranes desalinate water: mangrove


Mangrove Arch / Nick Leonard / LicenseCC-by-nc-sa - Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike

Mangroves extract salt from water via transpiration and filtering through membranes.

"Nature did not refrain from using energy produced in the power stations of plants for other important functions of life. One example is the desalination of seawater by evaporation energy. At the edge of shallow coastal waters of tropical seas we find the luscious green of mangrove swamps. Mangroves can live on the saline water of the ocean, which destroys other green terrestrial plants. In some species of mangroves the sap is almost salt-free, though the roots are washed by sea water. They extract the salt by using the transpiration energy in the narrow capillaries of their roots to suck up the sea water and then filtering it through thin membranes in which the salt is detained." (Tributsch 1984:184)
About the inspiring organism

Learn more at
Organism/taxonomy data provided by:
Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life: 2008 Annual Checklist

Bioinspired products and application ideas

Application Ideas: Desalination.

Industrial Sector(s) interested in this strategy: Desalination

Tributsch, H. 1984. How life learned to live. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. 218 p.
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over 8 years ago
I have been very interested in exploring this topic for about a year now. I think there is great merit in pursuing this technique of desalination
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