Paper Conference

Proceedings of Building Simulation 2021: 17th Conference of IBPSA


Development of adiabatic and isotherm humidifier models to compare health, energy and water use

Lien De Backer, Elisa Van Kenhove, Lieve Vandorpe, Jelle Laverge
Ghent University, Belgium

Abstract: In Belgium, when humidification is needed, isotherm (steam) humidification is mandatory in public buildings to prevent Legionella contaminations. The question is whether adiabatic humidification, which should be more energy efficient than isotherm humidification (Jo et al., 2017), can be used as an alternative without introducing a Legionella hazard. Two new Modelica component models for adiabatic and isotherm (steam) humidification are developed containing a biological Legionella pneumophila growth model (Van Kenhove et al., 2019). Both humidifier models are applied in a simulated case study office building. Energy use and L. pneumophila concentrations are compared (Vandorpe, 2020). The simulated cases show that it is possible to safely operate an adiabatic humidifier provided that correct measures are taken. This indicates that the current legislation may be too strict and opens doors to further indepth research.
Keywords: Legionella pneumophila, humidification, health, energy and water use, simulation
Pages: 2797 - 2804