Thursday, April 2, 2009

Using the sun to keep Australians cool

CSIRO Energy Technology (Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia; is developing a solar-powered air conditioning unit for residential use, using a desiccant-evaporative process to provide cool and dehumidified air. Thermally driven ab- or adsorption chillers are commonly used to provide cooling using heat, but these entail disadvantages: they are expensive, bulky, they produce chilled water instead of air, and they are not ideal for providing dehumidification under Australian summer ambient conditions.

Stephen White, a member of the CSIRO team, says that using solar heating for cooling is a new and important research area for Australia. "It addresses a national challenge since air conditioning and space heating are responsible for around 18% of the annual residential greenhouse gas emissions in Australia. Replacing 10% of the existing air conditioners in Australia with a low-energy consumption, solar-powered system could result in CO2 emission reductions of up to 1 million ton/yr of CO2."

The CSIRO team has tested the dehumidification performance of a desiccant wheel (300 mm dia.) made of an iron-alumino-phosphate zeolite with an AFI structure and traded under the name of FAM Z-01. Moisture removal capacity of the material is 8 g of water per kilogram of dry air with regeneration air at 80°C and 8.25% relative humidity, and an inlet air stream of 30°C and 93% relative humidity. The difference in moisture removal between 50°C and 80°C regeneration temperature was found to be less than 1-g water/kg dry air, for supply inlet temperatures between 10°C and 30°C and supply inlet relative humidity between 20 and 50%. Compared with silica gel, the performance of the FAM-Z01 material was best at the low regeneration temperatures expected in solar applications.

Write comments
  1. page has been digged and bookmarked, Thankx

  2. Good work. Looking forward to read more. Keep going....

  3. nice sharing about this..germany is doing the same...they are using the sun as source of power and energy..let's help save the earth!!

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  5. That is really a good idea.. I hope there's something like that here in our country as well..


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