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Volume 36 Number 2 Volume 36 Number 3 Volume 36 Number 4

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Research articles

ScienceAsia 36 (2010): 216-222 |doi: 10.2306/scienceasia1513-1874.2010.36.216

Characteristics and performance analysis of a natural desiccant prepared from coconut coir

Ratanakorn Rawangkula, Joseph Khedaria, Jongjit Hirunlabhb, Belkacem Zeghmatic

ABSTRACT:     The objective of this paper is to investigate the use of coconut coir (Cocos nucifera) as a desiccant for moisture adsorption in an engineering process. The physical, thermal, chemical, and adsorptive properties of un-boiled, 0.5 h, and 1 h boiled dried coconut coir were analysed. Coconut coir surface characteristics were examined by scanning electron microscope and pore size distribution and surface area were examined by mercury porosimeters. Chemical composition has been investigated using energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. Moisture adsorption isotherms of dried coconut coir were determined by the static method. Measurements of heat capacity revealed that boiling the coconut coir decreases the specific heat capacity from 4.33 to 3.83 kJ/kg K at 75 °C. Boiling, however, decreases the adsorption efficacy. The recommended time for boiling should be limited to no more than half an hour. The study confirmed the feasibility of using coconut coir as a desiccant.

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a Rattanakosin College for Sustainable Energy Environment, Rajamangala University of Technology Rattanakosin, 96 Mu 3 Thanon Phutthamonthon Sai 5, Salaya, Phutthamonthon, Nakhon Pathom 73170, Thailand
b School of Energy Environment and Materials, Building Scientific Research Centre, King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi, Bangmod Ratburana, 126 Pracha Uthit Rd., Thungkru, Bangkok 10140, Thailand
c MEPS-GEM, 52 Avenue Paul Alduy, 66860 Perpignan Cedex Université de Perpignan, France

* Corresponding author, E-mail: j_khedari@yahoo.co.th

Received 11 Dec 2008, Accepted 25 Aug 2010