Air well (condenser)
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High-mass air well of Belgian engineerAchile Knapen in Trans-en-Provence.
A 550 square metres (660 sq yd) radiative condenser in northwest India.
An air well or aerial well is a structure or device that collects water by promoting the condensation of moisture from air. Designs for air wells are many and varied, but the simplest designs are completely passive, require no external energy source and have few, if any, moving parts.
Three principal designs are used for air wells: high mass, radiative and active. High-mass air wells were used in the early 20th century, but the approach failed. From the late 20th century onwards, low-mass, radiative collectors proved to be much more successful. Active collectors collect water in the same way as a dehumidifier; although the designs work well, they require an energy source, making them uneconomical except in special circumstances. New, innovative designs seek to minimise the energy requirements of active condensers or make use of renewable energy resources.
Contents [hide] * 1 Background * 2 History * 2.1 Zibold's collector * 2.2 Chaptal's collector * 2.3 Klaphake's collectors * 2.4 Knapen's aerial well * 2.5 International Organisation for Dew Utilization * 3 Types * 3.1 High-mass * 3.2 Radiative * 3.3 Active * 4 See also * 5 References * 5.1 Notes * 5.2 Sources * 6 External links |
Global atmospheric water vapor for January 30, 2005. Northern hemisphere winter and southern hemisphere summer.
All air well designs incorporate a substrate with a temperature sufficiently low so that dew forms. Dew is a form of precipitation that occurs naturally when atmospheric water vapour condenses onto a substrate. It is distinct from fog, in that fog is made of droplets of water... [continues]
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