Research Portal

July 1, 2022

Improved Fog Collection Using Turf Reinforcement Mats

Feld, Shara I.; Spencer, Benjamin R.; Bolton, Susan M. (2016). Improved Fog Collection Using Turf Reinforcement Mats. Journal Of Sustainable Water In The Built Environment, 2(3).

View Publication


Impoverished communities are particularly vulnerable to increasing water scarcity. The development of low-cost technologies that improve access to unconventional water sources, such as the freshwater contained in fog, is one way to address water scarcity. Passive fog collectors, sited to maximize exposure to orographic and advection fog, are typically constructed using 35% Raschel mesh stretched within a structural frame. To assess improvements to this technology, the fog collection potential of nonwoven turf reinforcement mats ( TRM), underwent preliminary testing in a laboratory fog tunnel and more conclusive testing at a field site in Lima, Peru. In fog tunnel tests, both of the two tested TRM specimens increased fog collection yields over 35% Raschel mesh by 26 and 33% respectively. At one field site, the tested mats increased fog collection yields over 35% Raschel mesh by 62 and 75% respectively. At a second field site, these materials increased collection volumes over the 35% Raschel mesh by 146 and 178% respectively. Differences in TRM performance at different sites were likely due to different orientation to prevailing winds at the two test stations. This work suggests that nonwoven turf reinforcement mats have the potential to improve water access in arid, foggy low income communities. (C) 2016 American Society of Civil Engineers.


Water; Efficiency; Fresh Water; Water Resources; Water Supply; Peru; Fog Capture