Lead Performer: Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI
-- Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN
-- Samsung Electronics America, Ridgefield, NJ
DOE Total Funding: $734,565
Cost Share: $183,723
Project Term: July 1, 2019 – June 30, 2022
Funding Type: Cooperative Agreement

Project Objective

With abundant domestic supplies, natural gas continues to be one of the lowest-priced energy resources available in the United States. Leveraging this versatile energy source through development of energy-efficient and cost-competitive gas-powered appliances could offer American families tangible direct saving on their utility bills.

The goal of the project is to develop an advanced gas dryer system demonstrating significant improvements in fuel efficiency and drying performance compared to current gas clothes dryer technologies. The new system decouples latent and sensible loads to effectively utilize latent heat associated with the laundry moisture as an advantageous energy source. In other words, the system captures waste latent heat from moisture produced during fabric-drying process and reuses it to improve drying efficiency.

Project Impact

The majority, if not all, of single- and multi-load commercial clothes dryers and approximately 20% of single-load residential clothes dryers are gas-fired models, reflecting a primary energy market size of approximately 1 Quad/year. A large fraction of this energy consumption is attributed to a high moisture content produced during fabric-drying process deteriorating performance of existing systems. With a coefficient of performance (COP) greater than 1, the proposed desiccant-based fuel-driven dryer system takes advantage of available waste thermal energy in the environment, thereby offering U.S. households and businesses a unique way to save on their energy bills. Increasing energy performance of standard gas dryers, the proposed technology has the potential to save 0.6 Quad/year of the primary energy.


DOE Technology Manager: Antonio Bouza
Lead Performer: Sajjad Bigham, Michigan Technological University

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