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Energy efficient greenhouse dehumidifier for warm climate operating at wide temperature ranges (4-40° C) and free of fluorinated gases

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - Drygair20 (Energy efficient greenhouse dehumidifier for warm climate operating at wide temperature ranges (4-40° C) and free of fluorinated gases)

Reporting period: 2016-05-01 to 2016-08-31

DryGair20 aspires to be a disruptive greenhouse dehumidification system able to 1) recover up to 45L/h of moisture from the GH air and the latent energy stocked into the vapor and 2) improve the quantity and quality of the yield throughout a more homogeneous and optimal growing conditions inside the greenhouse itself. Our business model allows growers to save up to 45% of energy and increase up to 25% the yield, meaning a very quick payback and reducing production costs, being more competitive on the market.

In order to confirm the feasibility of DryGair20, after a four month study, we have developed the present study that checks the technical, commercial and financial feasibility of our project. We have analysed the technical developments ahead and prepared the execution plan for the development of the DryGair20 Prototype. We have performed an in-depth analysis of the target markets out of which we have developed our market strategy and our plan for DryGair20 market launch to the international markets. Financially, we have drafted a detailed 5-years financial forecast which has confirmed the potential return on investment of the DryGair project. Finally we have performed a deep FTO analysis in order to assure the possibility of introducing DryGair20 into selected markets without infringing any existing patent.
The past 4 months we have developed a Feasibility study to guarantee the techno-economic viability of our project. Here we present the main areas of focus and the results obtained:
Task 1: Technical Feasibility: This task provides a technical description of DryGair technology and its specifications, definition of the manufacturing and operating requirements, schedule for its development and testing to validate results, evaluation of the physical development (planning and costs) and accomplishment of a technical risk assessment in order to define a mitigation and contingency plan.
Task 2 Business plan development: We have developed a living document projecting 5 years into the future, outlining the necessary collaborative investments, development next-steps and future commercialization efforts. A market and risk analysis has been conducted in order to overcome competing solutions and best satisfy user requirements. We have divided the Business Plan in 4 subtasks:
Subtask 1 - Market analysis: We conducted a market research and analysis of the European Greenhouse cultivation, focusing in 2 strategic and humidity sensitive productions: tomatoes and flowers. During this task we have also reviewed EU regulation that could relate with DryGair20.
Subtask 2 – Commercialization strategy: Starting from the market analysis, we have designed a specific commercialization strategy, including tasks to be implemented during Phase 2 execution and tasks to be implemented after the launch of the product. We have designed specific measures in order to communicate and disseminate DryGair20 in Europe and worldwide as well as action to be implemented in order to strength our commercial network.
Subtask 3 - Financial projections: We have assessed the production costs and determined the selling price of DryGair20. Later we developed three possible scenarios for our technology selling, including a “best”, a “conservative” and a “worst” scenario. We rigorously evaluated the possibilities and advantages over the competition, as well as the market barriers, the payback for our company and for the end users, and we have demonstrated the DryGair20 great commercial potential. Finally, we evaluated the economic needs for its development and demonstrated that DryGair, with a 70% of EU funding, has the resources to complete the project.
Subtask 4 - IPR strategies: A deep evaluation and subsequent strategy of IP protection forDryGair20 technology and key features has been executed. A research of the State of the Art on GH dehumidification has been performed as well as a FTO for the selected markets. We determined our commercial and IPR strategy according to the findings of this research.
Task 3: Partners research: A stakeholder survey has been performed, which has helped us to complete a revised strategy for our pre-commercialization activities, the formalization of the necessary partner alliances, and all the activities to be carried out in order to get DryGair20 to success.
The technology implemented by DryGair will improve the current technology of Greenhouse dehumidification system, reducing the energy required for the optimal growing temperature and improving the climate condition for a better and more homogeneous yield. This technological innovation is possible through an innovative air distribution system combined with a low GWP refrigerant able to extend the range of working T from the actual 10-26 ºC up to 4-40 ºC, meaning that it will be applicable in the whole European territory. Following the EU policy DryGair20 1) will meet the EU regulation that will ban refrigerant with GWP higher than 2500; 2) will reduce GHG emissions lowering the GH heating necessity; 3) will reduce the necessity of pesticide as improved climate condition will decrease the onset of disease outbreaks; 4) will recover the water from the transpiration of the plants.