Improving dryer energy efficiency and controllability simultaneously by process modification

J.C. Atuonwu, G. van Straten, H.C. van Deventer, A.J.B. van Boxtel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


This work establishes a relationship between dryer energy performance and controllability using energy balances and process resiliency analysis. It is shown that using the process gain matrix, the dryer energy efficiency can be reliably calculated with conditions for simultaneous controllability improvement established. By incorporating a drying rate modifying system such as a desiccant dehumidifier as an add-on, these conditions are shown to be achievable due to the extra dehumidification which can be manipulated using the additional degrees of freedom introduced by the sorption system. Due to the adsorbent regulation properties which are enhanced by high-temperature regeneration, the resilience of energy performance to disturbances is significantly improved compared to conventional dryers. Also, a desiccant system performance indicator, the “adsorber–regenerator net energy efficiency ARNEE” is introduced and it is shown that energy efficiency improvement is possible only if the ARNEE is greater than the energy efficiency of the stand-alone dryer.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-144
JournalComputers and Chemical Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • desiccant adsorption
  • optimization
  • design
  • integration
  • model
  • bed

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