Membrane Processes for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning

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This article reviews literature on using membranes in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) applications. Membranes enable the separation of one species from another, and membranes allowing the selective permeation of water vapor can be used to condition air in buildings, potentially more efficiently than conventional HVAC equipment. After a brief background on membrane technology, this review focuses on the following processes: vacuum membrane dehumidification; membrane energy recovery ventilation; liquid desiccant dehumidification; liquid desiccant regeneration; evaporative cooling; and humidification. It highlights the design, modeling, and experimental research on these topics, and suggests areas for further research.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)290-304
Number of pages15
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
StatePublished - May 2014

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5500-60005


  • Air conditioning
  • Buildings
  • Energy recovery ventilator
  • HVAC
  • Liquid desiccant
  • Membrane


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