Dry Rooms (DRS)

dryroom.jpgWorking directly with clients, our engineers develop turnkey dry room solutions for use in research laboratories and production areas.

Dry rooms are designed to maintain temperatures from +20C to +40C, and maintain relative humidities to less than 1% (supply air dewpoints as low as -60C).

For those who need a customized solution backed by end-to-end services, our DRS series offers the specific capabilities you need with dependable, energy-efficient operation and ongoing value.


Product Description

As background, a low dewpoint dry room is an insulated wall, self-contained, vapor-tight enclosure operating at temperature setpoints generally between from 65°F to 75°F and at relative humidity setpoint as low as 0.5%, or room dewpoint setting of -35 F. This is achieved with delivered air of less than 0.1 grains / lb, or delivered air dewpoint of -70 F.

Low dewpoint dry rooms are typically built to support the battery industry, and in turn support the hybrid vehicle industry. The environment must be essentially ‘moisture-free’ due the hygroscopic nature of such items. The low dewpoint condition is critical as violent reactions can occur with even small amounts of moisture.

Low dewpoint dry rooms are also built to support the pharmaceutical industry, for applications when the presence of moisture during the manufacturing and packaging can cause degradation in the product’s quality.


Conditioning Design

drs_img2.jpgAirflow for cooling/heating/dehumidification is typically* provided by a Munters brand dehumidification ‘skid’ system located local to the room(s), not inside the room, preserving valuable user space.

The skid system features double wall construction with 1/8” thick aluminum paneling. Each skid system is custom designed to meet the specific design requirements of the client while being service friendly and both spatially and energy efficient. (*Smaller room systems may benefit from split cooling and DH systems for efficiency of equipment size and cost).

Airflow to and from this skid is ducted through fully seam welded aluminum for minimal infiltration of ambient air and moisture. All exterior ductwork is also insulated to minimize heating/cooling load. Ducted air is delivered into a ceiling cavity comprised of energy efficient T-5/T-8 troffer lights, sound absorbing acoustical tiles, and perforated tiles - these tiles which deliver air uniformly downwards throughout all of the workspace. Air is returned via a segregated end section of the ceiling cavity with open acrylic tiles.

All ductwork, supply registers, and return registers are carefully designed for optimal size and aspect ratios, low sound level, and field balancing capability. As applicable, supply and return ductwork is installed within the ceiling cavity to minimize room clearance requirements and minimize duct leakage and heat exchange to building ambient air. Lighting is carefully optimized via computer programs for best distribution/uniformity and highest ‘lumens per watt’.



drs_img3.jpgControl of the dehumidifier skid functions and alarming is by a local PLC controller at the system, and the main user interface and control is by a touchscreen Dryroom Control System, the ES DCS-3000. The touchscreen features intuitive Windows based programming, and has an easy to read 7” display. Control of temperature and humidity level (if required) is by PID algorithm for exceptionally tight process control. The control system features PLC modules for ease of expansion and replacement, in lieu of older mechanical controls, relays, and small LED indicators/controllers.

Standard control/monitoring points include: Room Setpoint Temperature, Room Actual Temperature, Drier Supply Dewpoint, Room Dewpoint or RH, and Cooling/Heating Signal Demands.

Optional monitoring points include: Room Supply Temperature, Room Return Temperature, Make-Up Air Pre-Cool Coil Exit Temperature, Blend Air Coil Exit Temperature, Drier Wheel Exit Temperature, Reactivation Exit Temperature, Compressor(s) Suction Temperature(s), Compressor(s) Suction Pressure(s), Compressor(s) Discharge Temperature(s), Compressor(s) Discharge Pressure(s), Room Static Pressure, and Condensing Unit Demand %.

Additional controls customization is available upon request. Ethernet-based monitoring and/or control is also available upon request for ease of remote service, troubleshooting, and system updates.


Design Input

Working closely with the client, ES determines the specifics of the dry room design, which consist of the following:

  • Temperature and relative humidity/dewpoint requirements
  • Room size(s) and access requirements (personnel door(s), equipment door(s), conveyer opening(s), hatch panel(s), etc)
  • Available equipment locations (indoor or outdoor, ground or roof locations)
  • Heat rejection planning (indoor or outdoor equipment, air or water cooling)
  • Reactivation heat source (electric, natural gas, or steam as available)
  • Type of product(s) (lithium, chemicals, etc), product electric / heat load, and variability of such
  • Product and/or personnel venting load, and variability of such
  • Room pressurization requirements, if defined (default to a minimum +0.02” w.c.)
  • Maximum occupancy in the room(s)
  • Equipment redundancy or recovery requirements (100% backup, shared component options)
  • Fire rating requirements and/or explosion safe design requirements
  • Interior wall and ceiling colors and lighting requirements (aesthetics, visibility, cleaning concerns)
  • Future expansion, revised condition requirements (modular expansion, change in people or product loads, new humidity setting, etc)
  • User control and interface requirements (service monitoring points, etc)
  • Using the information above and other detailed input from the client, ES provides the quality turnkey solution which minimizes energy, cost, and design-to-construction time.

Standard Features and Options

  • 4” urethane insulated cam-lock panel construction (R-29) for ease of assembly, disassembly, and expansion. A panel thickness of 4” and urethane composition provides superior heat transfer performance and structural rigidity over common 3” and 2” panels and foamboard systems. Panel construction materials and colors will be provided to match particular application. Panels are all carefully silicone sealed for minimal vapor transmission. Standard panels are FM Approved. Optional 4-hour fire rating and fire retardant construction, explosion panels and seismic panel clips are available.
  • Personnel and equipment doors with view windows, and spring auto closers or electric slide rails. All doors feature dual wiper floor and edge sweeps as required for low air leakage in low dewpoint dry room applications.
  • Airlock to minimize moisture migration into the low dewpoint dry room. The standard airlock is provided with troffer light(s) and ceiling system consistent with the dry room, and motion detector for energy efficient switching of the lights. The airlock can also serve as a gowning area for cleanroom designed dry rooms.
  • Third party listings (UL, MET Labs) of all major sub-components, including wall panel systems, dehumidifier systems, refrigeration systems, ceiling systems, control panels, electrical panels, and light fixtures.
  • Ceiling air and light distribution system comprised of T-5/T-8 troffer lights, sound absorbing acoustical tiles, and perforated panels. Light fixtures are energy efficient with high reflectivity back reflectors, high ballast factors, and maximum light spread. Sound absorbing acoustical / fissured tiles mimic the sound and visual characteristics of typical office and general work areas. Perforated panels are carefully spaced to provide even, low velocity/low noise distribution of air downwards and throughout the work area, in lieu of large high velocity/high noise supply ducts or wall supply systems. Return air flows through a segregate ceiling section, or via wall systems, as an alternative. OPTIONAL parabolic, indirect, and/or LED lighting is available. OPTIONAL ceiling HEPA filter modules are available.
  • High efficiency HFC (non-CFC) direct expansion* refrigeration systems, either air cooled or water cooled. Typical refrigerants include R-404A, R-407C, and R-410A. Typical systems include multiple scroll compressor stages for energy efficient operation during times of low heat load, and fully proportioning control valves to eliminate cycling solenoids. Each condensing unit features high and low pressure controls, water regulating valve (as applicable), head pressure control valves (as applicable), fusible plug or pressure relief valve, vibration absorbers on suction and discharge lines, vibration isolating compressor mounts, suction line filter, liquid line filter/drier, hot gas bypass valve, and site glasses. All interconnection piping between the dehumidification skid and refrigeration system is hard drawn copper with optimal sizing for best oil return, low noise, and low pressure drop. (*Note that DX systems are not applicable with usage of building chilled water).
  • Munters brand dehumidification skid system, including local PLC control system, pre and post cooling coils, regenerative desiccant wheel, reactivation heat section, reactivation blower, process fan/blower, pre-filtration, post-filtration, and bypass/purge section as required for ultra-low dewpoint applications. Cooling coils are copper tube / aluminum optimally designed for heat transfer and low velocity/pressure drop. Process fans are belt driven airfoil type and chosen at low RPM’s for lowest vibration and noise. OPTONAL heat reclaim coils are available, for process air stream post-heating and/or for reactivation pre-heating.
    (*Note that some items above are not applicable in all applications).
  • ES DCS-3000 touchscreen control system with 7” screen size, mounted within a control enclosure type of NEMA 1, NEMA 12, or NEMA 4X. The DCS-3000 controls and monitors dry room temperature and humidity of room space air, and all parameters have real time trending and data logging available. Ethernet output is available for remote monitoring (only) as standard. High quality aluminum oxide current sensors with built-in temperature elements provide sensing of the dehumidification skid supply conditions. For control of humidity (if applicable), the DCS modulates a face bypass damper in the dehumidification skid system. For control of temperature, the DCS modulates a hot gas bypass valve (i.e. 3-pipe) for efficient coil temperature modulation without need for electric heat. OPTIONAL Ethernet communication module is available for remote monitoring and control access to the DCS-3000. OPTIONAL LEL sensing is available for explosion safe applications.
  • Full documentation support including information for approval and owner’s records. The Project Submittal, for client approval, includes general arrangement drawings and detailed component information. The Owners Manual includes all information above and additional electrical wiring diagrams, refrigeration schematics, detailed site testing reports, mechanical and electrical spare parts list, warranty documentation, and service contact information.