What is dry evaporative technology? How does it work?

By Alsie Nelson | Last updated: July 26, 2023
Presented by Ergodyne

High temperatures and physical exertion will cause your body to break out into a sweat. While this can cause some discomfort, there's actually a very good reason for that natural response – sweating is how your body cools itself down.

It's a clever and useful process. So useful, in fact, that scientists have studied it closely in order to develop cooling technology based on the same principles your body uses to regulate its temperature.

One of the latest being dry evaporative materials.

Graphic representation of the way evaporative materials cool the body.

How Dry Evaporative Materials Work

While the body's ability to cool itself is certainly impressive, it's not always sufficient, especially in hot environments or when doing physically demanding tasks. That's because the sweat that cools you down is also expelling moisture from your body, which can lead to dehydration.

Dry evaporative technology combines manufactured materials with evaporative principle to keep the body cool without causing it to lose fluids.

Whether they're hats, headbands, towels, or vests, these items all work the same way. The user fills or soaks them in water. That moisture is then gradually released via evaporation, cooling down the wearer in the process.

(Learn about New Trends in Equipment to Help Outdoor Workers Beat the Heat)

By pulling heat from the body

, dry evaporative gear helps retain internal moisture longer so the body does not have to work as hard to cool itself down. This not only provides the wearer with comfort but also reduces their risk of dehydration.

Image of someone filling a dry evaporative vest with water.

A worker donning a vest made of dry evaporative materials would be wearing a close-fitting garment that covers most of their torso, ensuring that a large part of their body is kept cool. The vest would also help them stay dry the entire time it is in use, significantly increasing the wearer's comfort.

Worker from a roadworks construction crew wearing a dry evaporative vest.

Keep in mind that dry evaporative items should not be your only line of defense against heat stress. They are not intended as a replacement for cooling station, proper hydration, sun protection, and other control measures for heat hazards. Rather, they can supplement these other safety measures and help keep workers cool and safe on the job, no matter the temperature.

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Written by Alsie Nelson | Product Director

Alsie Nelson

Come check out my professional profile here to see more articles I've written

Alsie Nelson has spent three of her nine professional years in product development and category management at Ergodyne. In her role as Product Manager, she focuses on developing products to combat temperature stress - including Ergodyne’s Chill-Its® Cooling Gear and Shax® Work Shelters. She earned a BA in Retail Merchandising and Management with a concentration in Buying from the University of Wisconsin-Stout.

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