Differences between summer and winter – why?
Lots of industrial processes encounter big differences in quality and efficiency from one season to another. Many companies simply put up with this.
The reason in lies differing levels of moisture in the air. Relative humidity (%RH) outdoors is more or less the same all year round – which is why most people think it has no influence on operating conditions.
Absolute humidity (g/kg), on the other hand, fluctuates considerably. For example, on a warm summer day in Denmark absolute humidity will often amount to about 13 g/kg – whereas it’d be about 3 g/kg in the winter.
This can result in big differences in relative humidity at the same temperature.
Big differences in relative humidity indoors
Absolute humidity (g/kg) is normally the same indoors and outdoors.
During cold winter periods, however, most companies want to provide their staff with more comfortable working conditions, and therefore have the heating on inside their buildings and production facilities. This usually results in relative humidity indoors falling to about 15% at 25ºC.
There’s no need for heating during warmer summer periods, so levels of relative humidity often reach 65% at 25ºC.
Relative humidity has important consequences for how much moisture the air can absorb, and this capability therefore varies considerably between winter and summer. The air can absorb more moisture during colder months.
Summer production difficulties
If your company encounters otherwise inexplicable production difficulties during the summer, it may well be that your production processes work best when levels of relative humidity are low. Typical examples include the manufacture of electronics, coatings and paint, and production involving fibreglass, adhesives and powders.
Big differences in drying capacity
The same kinds of differences in results can apply to drying capacity. This is particularly relevant in spray-drying, fluid bed drying, etc., although the differences in relative humidity are less during warm periods when temperatures are higher.
But because the air entering the drying process is required to have a consistent moisture content all year round, the widely varying moisture conditions in the inlet air mean that Cotes dehumidification systems make it possible to achieve considerably better drying capacity.
Under Danish conditions, for example, it is possible to boost drying capacity by 10–15%, at the same time as making conditions more stable and more predictable. Under conditions typical in Asia, drying capacity improvements can amount to as much as 30–40%,
Want to reduce seasonal fluctuations?
Cotes experts are at hand to help you work out why your operations get affected by seasonal fluctuations in humidity – and how best to tackle this with effective humidity management to ensure consistent conditions all year round.