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"The End of Water As We Know It" with Seth Darling

We are witnessing the end of the golden age of water. Freshwater was once abundant, cheap and safe for humans, but that is changing rapidly. Couple that with the fact that over the next 35 years, the world’s demand for water will rise by 55 percent, and it’s no wonder that water technology and management figure to shape the 21st century much like oil conflicts influenced the 20th century.

Access to clean water will affect everything from how our food is raised to how our economies function.

So how can we reshape a better future for water?

In his talk, ‘The End of Water as We Know it” Dr. Seth Darling will discuss how we got to this point, what lies ahead, and what can be done now to respond and adapt. He will also give an overview of the research Argonne is doing in this space, including innovative approaches to water treatment.


Seth Darling screencap.jpgSeth Darling

Nanoscientist, Center for Nanoscale Materials, Argonne National Laboratory

Fellow, Institute for Molecular Engineering, The University of Chicago

Seth’s current research blends chemistry, physics, materials science and engineering, and nanoscience to create and study materials for energy and water.

Recent studies have focused on design of next-generation solar energy devices, new architectures for water purification, and advanced lithography techniques based on sequential infiltration synthesis.

He serves as the Solar Energy Systems strategy leader for the laboratory and has developed new models of the economics and life cycle assessment of solar energy.


Argonne National Laboratory, one of the U.S. Department of Energy's largest national laboratories for scientific and engineering research, addresses vital national challenges in clean energy, environment, technology and national security. The lab, located just outside Chicago, in Lemont, Ill., is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC, for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science. The University of Chicago has served as prime contractor of Argonne since the lab’s founding in 1946.

Argonne OutLoud,” the lab’s free public lecture series, highlights the cutting-edge research taking place at Argonne as well as collaborative research with other institutions, including the University of Chicago.