Purely thermal heat pumps can be devised with adsorbate/solid adsorbent pairs, for example for refrigeration purposes. As each cycle consists of two periods, i.e., heating/desorption/condensation and cooling/adsorption/evaporation, this mode of operation is well-suited to solar energy. After experiments with the Zeolite/Water pair, a solar-powered ice maker was designed with the Activated Carbon/Methanol pair, and a prototype was built in Orsay. The solar collectors (6 m2) contain, on the whole, 130 kg of A.C., the condensers are air-cooled, and the evaporator has a net production of 30–35 kg of ice per sunny day. The ice is easily removed, and in principle the machine could be automatically operated. The net solar C.O.P. is 0.12, which makes this machine one of the most efficient solar ice makers.

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