Request for Proposal
Status: RFP is Closed

Novel Approaches to Dry Large Volumes of Air

Request Number
Due Date
Apr 30
Program Manager


Licensing, product acquisition, supplier agreement, proof of concept leading to scale-up to manufacturing, joint development, contract research


Phase 1 - Proof of concept (3-6 months)

Phase 2 - Pilot scale testing (3 months)


Funding is available to adapt promising technologies.

All financials are to be negotiated.

RFP was closed on

RFP Title


Novel Approaches to Dry Large Volumes of Air
RFP Description
NineSigma, representing Wärtsilä Moss, invites proposals for a scalable technology that can efficiently remove water vapor from air. The method should be cost-effective and able to dehumidify up to 20,000 Nm³ of air per hour.

Wärtsilä provides environmentally and economically sound integrated solutions for various merchant vessels including LNG carriers. When LNG tanks are emptied they have to be aerated to remove all combustible gases. These tanks are however very cold (-40°C) and any vapor in the air will freeze inside the tank. The current air dehumidification method Wärtsilä Moss installs on LNG carriers is based on chillers that cool the air down to 5°C to remove most of the water vapor, followed by passing the air through a desiccant tower packed with activated alumina.  Although this approach is effective it is not easy to scale and the installed capacity is not always used in an optimal way.


Wärtsilä Moss wants to know if there are other approaches on the market or if novel techniques are being develop to dehumidify air or an inert gas like N2.  



Anticipated Project Phases or Project Plan

Phase 1 – Proof of concept

  • Evaluation of the proposed technology in a client-specified setting
  • Verification of manufacturing and operating costs


Phase 2 – Pilot scale

  • Implementing the principle in a pilot scale plant designed and build by Wärtsilä Moss.



Key Success Criteria

The successful technology will:

  • Be able to treat up to 20,000 Nm³ of air/inert gas per hour
    • Be scalable and allow seamless operation between 2,000 Nm³ and 20,000 Nm³
    • Provide continuous flow of dry air
    • Bring the dew point to -45°C
    • Maximum temperature of air/inert gas to be dehumidified is 45°C (‘operating design case’)
  • Be cost effective
  • Require minimal maintenance
  • Be easy and safe to operate


A technology proposal currently not having satisfied the above requirements is also welcome as long as it has the potential to achieve the target with additional development within 2 years.


Possible Approaches

Possible approaches might include, but are not limited to:

  • Membrane separation
  • Dessicants that are easy to regenerate
  • Hygroscopic liquids


Approaches not of Interest

The following approaches are not of interest:

  • Cooling liquids based on chlorofluorocarbons (H-CFCs)
  • Toxic materials


Items to be Submitted

Your response should address the following:

  • Non-confidential description of proposed technology
  • Main advantages/drawbacks in comparison with well-known solutions
  • Technical maturity of the approach (concept, prototype, ready to commercialize, commercialized)
  • Performance of the technology
    • Power consumption
    • Size and weight
    • Flow rate
    • Cost estimates
  • Any development plans and estimated costs to meet the requirements
  • IP situation and option for exclusive use
  • Brief profile of the proposing organization and related experience


Appropriate responses to this Request

Responses from companies (small to large), researchers, venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, or inventors are welcome.  For example:

You represent a company that has membrane technology that should provide a solution ready for testing and transfer to commercial use.

You represent a university research department that has a pilot-scale demonstration of a novel desiccant based method that should meet the requirements.



Preferred Collaboration Types
Area of Interest