In 2015 an internationally recognized mink fur pelt manufacturer based in Sheboygan Falls, WI, contacted De Troye Electric Service , an electrical and controls engineering company based in Oostburg, WI. The manufacturer called to discuss the goal of improving its pelt drying process by retrofitting two rooms at a processing facility using equipment made in the USA. De Troye Electric Service then contacted Vyron Corporation , the Desert Aire manufacturers representative based in Waukesha, WI.
Project Requirements & Needs
Key application factors were dehumidification within a tight temperature range as well as controlled air exchanges to prevent mold and improve air quality. The equipment was mounted inside to minimize ductwork and installation costs.
Desert Aire based the application solution on VerticalAireTM Series dehumidification systems. The units were selected to be compact and cost-efficient for the pelt drying rooms that each measure 2,000 sq ft with an average ceiling of 11 ft. The VerticalAire system controllers are BACnetTM Ethernet compatible to integrate with a Building Management System.
Desert Aire customized the systems to meet application challenges. Since the condition of supply air has a significant impact on product quality, all of the air needs to be conditioned. To ensure the supply air condition is maintained year-round, Desert Aire custom- programmed the units based on its Dedicated Outdoor Air System (DOAS) technologies. Desert Aire also used control values specific to specialty process applications.
Additional customizations and system specials include variable speed compressors with modulating hot gas reheat capabilities. These further enhance each unit’s ability to provide precise zone conditions.
Operators set a specific value for temperature and relative humidity within each drying room using a control panel interface. The internal controller translates this value into a dewpoint. This establishes the absolute moisture content in the zone to reduce hunting of the control on startup and as conditions change when operators load carts of damp pelts in the drying rooms.
The decision to spend more on the control of temperature and humidity with large load changes has allowed the systems to be stable. The manufacturer can dry pelts with more consistency and can control the varying loads. The customer reports seeing an increase in the size of stretched and dried pelts. Also, that they are getting a better product using less labor.