The Department of Energy is currently conducting research into heat pump laundry dryers.
This project seeks to develop a heat pump dryer that can provide the same amenities as a conventional dryer, only with lower energy consumption. The proposed concept will integrate a vapor compression heat pump to supply heating to improve the overall efficiency.
Research is being undertaken through a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) between the Department of Energy, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and a CRADA partner.
The goal of this project is to create a heat pump laundry dryer that can provide clothes drying at 40% energy savings compared to similar conventional minimum efficiency equipment.
Benefits and Impacts
Clothes dryers use significant amounts of heat in their cycles; up to 4 kW alone is used for the heating elements. In addition to reduced energy use during clothes drying, further savings would result from the load reduction on the home heating/cooling system by elimination of the dryer exhaust venting air out of the home.
Antonio M. Bouza