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Solar Desiccant Dehumidification
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Solar Desiccant Dehumidification image

Did you know…? 

Solar energy isn’t just for electricity, or even hot water. It can also be used to dehumidify interior spaces (especially your basement)!

Desiccant dehumidification works by forcing two separate air streams through a porous wheel whose channels are coated with a solid desiccant like silica gel.  Moisture is removed from the air stream that flows through one half of the wheel.  Solar-heated air is forced through the other half of the wheel to dry out the desiccant, so that as it turns, the wheel continuously dehumidifies the first air stream.  Desiccant dehumidification is a great way to use excess energy from oversized solar hot water systems.

A prototype like the one shown here was designed and built by Ella Willard-Schmoe, Zapotec’s newest design engineer, as part of her master’s thesis.  Solar thermal energy provided 88% of the input energy for the system.  Ella will be presenting a paper based on her research at the Annual National Solar Conference this July!


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