Solar Desiccant Cooling

December 6, 2007 - 12:00pm
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The development of HVAC systems is a real challenge regarding its environmental impact. An innovative technique operating only by means of water and solar energy, is desiccant cooling. The principle is evaporative cooling with the introduction of a dehumidification unit, the desiccant wheel to control the humidity levels. The regeneration of the desiccant wheel requires a preheated airstream.  A solar installation is a very interesting option for providing the preheated airstream. In France, at the University of La Rochelle, and at the National Institute of Solar Energy (INES), the investigation of the solar desiccant cooling technique has been carried on since 2003. In the summer of 2007 a solar desiccant cooling plant at the University of La Rochelle became operational. It is one of the most advanced installations in Europe. These experiments demonstrate the potential of solar desiccant systems for use in moderately humid climates. This presentation will discuss the experimental results as well as detailed models of the solar collectors and the desiccant wheel.

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