Application of Dehumidifiers for Various Industries, Industry Today

October 25, 2018

Climate control plays a vital role in the production, storage and transportation of numerous products. Humidity is one of the critical factors of climate control. Excess humidity can lead to costly quality errors in humidity sensitive industries. Therefore, the process of controlling environmental conditions is essential for reduction in quality errors. Since, environment control is a consistent process, it must be achieved without affecting either of the:

> The ROI of production, storage or transportation

> The normal operations of production, storage or transportation

Dehumidification of air can be accomplished by adsorption of the moisture, with the help of a desiccant dehumidifier. It is a cost and energy efficient machine that helps in controlling the moisture levels, removing odour and micro-organisms from the air. With low maintenance and customizable options, an industrial desiccant dehumidifier is a solution for excess humidity. Industrial dehumidifiers also find their applications across various industries such as:

  1. Food Industry:
    Excess humidity causes condensation and a broad range of hygiene problems in the product. Be it powdered food, spices, processed meat, snack foods confectionery products or breweries, consistent and controlled moisture conditions are necessary. Using dry air from a Desiccant dehumidifier can help in controlling the moisture content, which leads to perfect coating and longer shelf life of the food products.
  2. Lithium Batteries:
    The primary requirement for manufacturing of lithium batteries is a dry room with very low humidity. Lithium is extremely sensitive to moisture; thus, high moisture content leads to a reduction in performance and life of the product. Industrial dehumidifiers ensure that the processing areas have the required amount of moisture in the air which is less than 14gms of moisture per kg of dry air.
  3. Pharmaceutical Industry:
    During the processing stage, most of the medicines are in powdered form and are highly hygroscopic. Excess of moisture absorption leads to organic corrosion, biochemical reactions and micro-organism growth on the product. Dehumidifiers help in keeping the required humidity parameters for processing, drying, storing and transportation of medicines.
  4. Cold Stores:
    To prevent flowers, vegetables, fruits, milk and processed foods from deterioration they are cooled and stored in cold store under low moisture conditions. Since the cold stores experience the frequent movement of products, warm air with moisture from outside could enter the store. This results in ice and frost formation on the walls, floors and ceilings on the cold stores. Air curtain using Dehumidified air at the cold store doors helps in controlling the ingress of moisture laden entering the cold rooms.
  5. Defense Industry:
    Military equipment is highly prone to humidity damage when they are stored for long periods. Uncontrolled humidity causes corrosion and malfunctioning of equipment, fungal growth on maps, drawings and bacterial infection on rations. Storage rooms of standard equipment such as trucks, tanks, guns and ammunition require specific humidity levels and controlled temperature. Dehumidifiers help in preventing corrosion on the equipment by keeping humidity levels less than 35%.
  6. Electronic and Semiconductors:
    Components used in assembling or processing of semiconductors are hygroscopic and highly sensitive to excess humidity. Excess moisture results in corrosion of PCB, transistor failures, and condensation on integrated circuits. The RH in semiconductor manufacturing area must be 30% at 20oc. Industrial dehumidifiers also help in protecting the vacuum and EPI equipment.
  7. Turbine Industry:
    Moisture can corrode turbines, boilers, condensers and many other machines when they are kept for maintenance during the layup process. High humidity causes corrosion and rusting on the equipment leading to their malfunctioning. As the repair and downtime costs of these equipment are very high, moisture control becomes essential. Industrial dehumidifiers help in keeping moisture levels low during the storage of the product; thus, preventing corrosion.
  8. Leather industry:
    The Leather is a hygroscopic material; excess moisture leads to the growth of mold and mildew on leather. Without proper humidity control, leather loses its shine, produces the foul smell, loses its strength and starts decomposing. Relative humidity above 40% leads to micro-organism growth that results in decomposition of leather. Dehumidifiers help in providing controlled moisture conditions during the processing of leather products.

Applications of industrial dehumidifiers are not limited to these familiar sectors. There are many other unfamiliar sectors in which dehumidifiers help in controlling moisture. These include:

  • Film Drying:
    All photosensitive materials deteriorate with age, but the rate of deterioration is largely dependent upon moisture conditions. Excess humidity accelerates the growth of mold and fungus which leads to hydrolysis causing the materials to experience binder breakdown. Thus, the relative humidity should always be around 30% in the storage area of the films.
  • Ice Skating Rinks:
    High humidity causes condensation, fog and an uncomfortable environment in ice skating rinks. Due to collection of condensed water, the rink can become slippery leading to fatal accidents. The relative humidity in the ice skating rinks should be maintained at 10% at about 11.3°C.
  • Fertilizer Industry:
    Most commercial fertilisers have a high concentration of nutrients and are hygroscopic. They absorb moisture at a high rate which leads to caking, oozing and lumping of materials. Due to these defects, the fertilisers lose their strength, physical and chemical properties, and may cause health hazards. Relative humidity in storage areas should be between 35-40% at 27oC.
  • Museums and Archives:
    The materials in museums and archives are composed of organic materials such as paper, cotton, wood, natural fibre etc. These materials are hygroscopic and absorb moisture at a high rate. Moisture absorption can lead to fungi growth, resulting in deterioration of the products. Dehumidifiers help in controlling moisture and keeping it in the ideal condition of 20-30%.

Humidity control has become the need of the hour for all the industries. The moisture menace has been affecting different stages of the industries. Starting from manufacturing, processing, packaging, storage, testing every step of production requires moisture control.

The benefits of an industrial dehumidifier in factories and storage rooms are prudent and outweigh its installation cost in the long run. Industries looking for a sustainable growth must start investing in this product.

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