Thermal energy use for dehumidification of a tomato greenhouse by natural ventilation and a system with an air-to-air heat exchanger
Keywords:Thermal energy use, greenhouses, humidity, dehumidification, ventilation, rotating heat exchanger
The aim of the study was to estimate the amount of thermal energy used for dehumidification of a naturally ventilated tomato greenhouse and to estimate how mechanical ventilation with the use of a heat exchanger recovering heat from the exhaust to the supply air may decrease the energy use. Measured use of thermal energy in a naturally ventilated tomato greenhouse was compared to modelled values using Powersim® software. By the help of the model an estimation of the amount of energy used for dehumidification was made for the months April – September. A non-hygroscopic rotary air-to-air heat exchanger was studied, and its temperature and moisture efficiencies were measured. Modelling for leaf area index (LAI) 3.5 and 4.0 m2 m-2 indicated that 23 and 29% of the total thermal energy was used for moisture removal respectively. Modelling for the heat exchanger indicated thermal energy savings of 15 and 17% for the same LAI respectively.
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