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With stingy, risk-averse customers, it's tough to commercialize new water purification technologies. Start-ups are focusing on a niche to get a foothold.
Kendall Station plans to ship "green steam" from a combined heat and power plant to heat buildings miles away, lightening the environmental footprint of the Boston-area power plant.
The Navy funds research for on-ship desalination systems that promise to be more energy efficient, smaller, and handle water contaminants better.