Cooling plant

Essential chiller maintenance checklist


Every chiller or chiller plant should be, for the most part, relatively self-reliant. Yet like all heavy machinery, regular preventive maintenance can improve performance, prevent breakdowns, and extend the service life of the equipment. Chillers should be inspected leastwise two times a year if they are only used during the cooling seasons and four times a year in case of continuous operation.

We recommend the following procedures to keep your chiller system at peak performance and avoid unexpected shutdowns and costly downtimes. The below checklist has been compiled to help chiller plant operators conduct detailed and reliable maintenance on air-cooled and water-cooled chillers.

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CAB furnace

Microchannel heat exchangers: fabrication process


Air-conditioning and refrigeration industries have been evolving rapidly over the past decades. The latest energy efficiency regulations and phase-out of ozone-depleting refrigerants spur further development of air-to-refrigerant heat exchangers, making microchannel heat exchangers the better alternative to conventional heat exchangers for the majority of HVAC manufacturers. Heat transfer technology based on microchannel coils offers the largest potential for improving energy efficiency, reducing refrigerant volumes required,  while also providing a number of other benefits.

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Refrigerant distributor

Optimization of refrigerant distribution for microchannel evaporators


Microchannel heat exchangers have been broadly used in automotive applications due to their advantages of compactness, low weight, and high efficiency. There are numerous heat exchangers designs based on microchannel technology with folded fins and flat tubes which are connected to manifolds. These designs are predominantly used for automotive radiators, condensers, and, more recently, automotive air conditioning evaporators.

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Dry cooler

Dry coolers vs. wet cooling towers

Working Principle

Cooling towers are heat-transfer devices that are used to reject heat loads to the atmosphere. Cooling towers are used to cool circulating water in a wide variety of applications such as process cooling and HVAC systems.

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Water-cooled chiller

Air-cooled vs. water-cooled chillers

Working Principle and Differences

A chiller is a heat transferring device that uses mechanical refrigeration to remove heat from a continuous flow of process liquid and transfers it to the environment, thus lowering the temperature of the process liquid. Read more

E-coated microchannel coil

Heat exchanger protection with electrocoating



Corrosion, the deterioration of metals and alloys through a physical and/or chemical reaction with the environment, is expensive. Heat exchangers used in HVAC equipment, specifically condenser and cooling/heating coils are exposed in the environment, and this can lead to corrosion, failures, and performance degradation of the equipment in the cases of improper heat exchanger protection in corrosive locations.

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Serpentine coil

Serpentine coils for compact cooling systems



Compact heat exchangers, especially those of serpentine design, are widely used for cooling in many industries, products and systems, from consumer products to IT cooling to military applications. In recent times, with the advances in microfluidics and progress in manufacturing, compact microchannel heat exchangers are becoming widespread. The principal idea behind using microchannel heat exchangers is their potential for enhanced heat transfer capabilities. The use of such heat exchangers enables the transfer of large amounts of heat while benefiting from high heat transfer coefficients.

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Microchannel heat exchanger manufacturing plant

Microchannel coils in single-phase heat transfer applications


Single-phase heat exchangers are widely used today for a variety of cooling and heating applications and in different types of equipment. These include free cooling systems, dry coolers, air conditioners, and more, where the most common media is water or glycol mixtures. Microchannel coils in practice became the norm in condenser applications, and, more recently, microchannel heat exchangers became an alternative to finned tube coils that used traditionally for water applications.

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Evaporatively-cooled chiller

Enhancing air-cooled chiller performance with evaporative cooling


Amount of electrical power consumed by cooling systems in energy-intensive industries like data centers and manufacturing plants is huge, especially in hot climate locations, and this fuels the development of new, energy-efficient cooling solutions and equipment for mission-critical applications. One of the more promising solutions is evaporative cooling combined with the conventional compressor-based system.

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Turbocor centrifugal chiller

Highly efficient Turbocor-based chillers


From an energy usage point of view, chillers are the most energy-intensive equipment to run and the key components within a chiller that impact performance and energy consumption are compressors. Turbocor compressors with built-in variable speed control can offer substantial energy savings of 50-60% compared to chillers equipped with fixed-speed compressors. In addition to the stepless capacity control, the Turbocor compressors employ built-in inlet guide vanes to trim the compressor capacity at low loads.

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Evaporative dry coolers

Hybrid dry coolers: a water-saving cooling solution


Closed-loop process cooling systems are gaining attention among a growing number of industries with the introduction of more stringent regulations on water use and increasing costs for water purchase and discharge. A hybrid cooling system where the dry cooling and evaporative cooling technologies are taken together is an attractive alternative to open-loop cooling towers in terms of both water saving and efficiency.

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Microchannel heat exchanger

Microchannel heat exchangers as an advanced alternative to traditional HVAC coils

Introduction

For over three decades now, air-to-refrigerant microchannel heat exchangers have been successfully used in a number of industries, including automotive and chemical processing. More than a decade ago, microchannel heat exchangers were introduced in the HVAC industry; but it must be noted that requirements concerning heat exchangers and their operating conditions in refrigeration and air conditioning systems are different from those applicable in the automotive and other industries. Because of this, the first adaptations of microchannel heat exchangers to HVAC applications, principally as condensers, were not entirely successful.

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Precision air conditioner

Technology rally: microchannel vs. finned tube evaporator



In recent times, microchannel heat exchangers (MCHE) have started to attract attention from the HVAC industry as an alternative to fin/tube evaporators. The enhancement of heat transfer and compactness are major advantages of microchannel heat exchangers, as well as reduced refrigerant charge, lower airside pressure drop, and a reduction in materials used for manufacturing. Under current tight regulations of energy efficiency, microchannel heat exchangers are appreciated by many leading manufacturers.

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Cooling plant

Efficiency optimization for cooling plants


In most developed countries, a large amount of energy use of about 6% of the total is for air conditioning and refrigeration. The same is true for many hot countries where air conditioning systems use up to 40% of energy in the cities, and this could be a major problem as developing economies continue to grow.

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In-row cooling

Aisle containment as an approach to data center cooling


For decades, data centers have used raised floor systems to deliver cooled air to the server racks. Cooled air discharged by a computer room air conditioner (CRAC – a split air conditioning system or system with fluid coolers) or air handler (CRAH – a chilled water cooling system connected to air-cooled or water-cooled chillers) creates high pressure in the underfloor space. Read more

Microchannel coil

Corrosion protection for microchannel heat exchangers


Corrosion is the deterioration of metals arising from the chemical reactions between a metal and the surrounding environment. In HVAC equipment, such as air-cooled chillerscondensers, and dry coolers, corrosion of the heat exchangers may lead to performance and efficiency losses, as well as to equipment failures.

In order to avoid unwanted corrosion, microchannel heat exchangers and chilled water system, in general, must be properly protected based on environmental conditions.

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Evaporatively-cooled condenser

Evaporative cooling helps to boost cooling equipment efficiency


Adiabatic cooling was first used in the Roman Empire. For 2000 years, people have been using water evaporation to cool down the surrounding air in all types of climate systems, including modern, highly advanced cooling systems, where engineers combine this ancient principle with modern technologies.

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Chiller sequencer

Sequence management for chiller plants


When it comes to chilled water plant optimization, the control strategy based on management of individual water chillers is not an optimum approach to achieve the best results in terms of energy efficiency.

Individual control of the water chillers with common pipework will cause unnecessary cycling of compressors and associated excessive power consumption as a response to changes in cooling demand; consequently, compressor cycling will lead to unstable return water temperature and increased wear of compressors.

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Free cooling chiller

Microchannel coils in free cooling applications


Air-based free cooling uses low-temperature ambient air as a cooling medium for chilled water systems, thus providing significant opportunities to generate energy savings. The more time the chilled water system can operate in the free cooling mode, the higher the energy savings it can deliver.

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Microchannel evaporator

Advanced microchannel technology for HVAC and process cooling


The HVAC and process industries are making a transition to microchannel heat exchangers. This is evidenced by the extensive use of microchannel condensers by major HVAC manufacturers and many smaller OEMs manufacturing cooling and refrigeration equipment. Significant energy efficiency improvements drive the trend, the need for smaller equipment footprints and weight, conversion to lower GWP refrigerants, and the ongoing rise in the cost of copper.
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Microchannel heat exchanger

Methods of microchannel coils defrosting


Microchannel coils are becoming quite popular as an alternative to bulky fin/tube heat exchangers. For desired capacity, microchannel coils are smaller in size compared to a fin/tube heat exchangers, resulting in less refrigerant charge in the system.

The most frequent issue with which users are faced when considering microchannel coils for some applications, like heat pumps, is the issue of a shorter frosting time compared to fin/tube coils, and the further reduction in time, with each cycle due to residual water retained at the end of each defrost cycle.

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Microchannel heat exchanger

Microchannel coils add dimension for cooling systems



by Steven Wand

Although not traditionally used in industrial process applications, microchannel designs may offer advantages over traditional coil technologies in most process cooling applications. Long considered a coil technology primarily used in commercial and residential air-conditioning, microchannel coils are being used by more manufacturers who have discovered how they can improve process cooling applications.

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Microchannel heat exchanger

Microchannel coil: fix or replace


by Lance Robinson

I vote for fix. Anytime you can fix a condenser as opposed to replacing it, is a good day for all in the repair business. Less time = more money. Customers are happier and all around better vibe. Replacement of perfectly good coil makes no sense. Instead make the fix in less than 5 minutes with a propane torch and a few simple instruments all HVAC techs have on hand.

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Microchannel heat exchanger

Formicary corrosion



Approximately 10% of heat exchanger failures are connected with leaks caused by formicary corrosion. Organic compounds remain on copper tubes during manufacturing and fabrication of the HVAC equipment, are able to advance to formicary corrosion only with the simultaneous presence of moisture, oxygen, and acids. Read more

Microchannel heat exchanger

Aluminum coils: recommendations for cleaning


by Carter Stanfield

Aluminum coils are here to stay. Not only have they been applied successfully for years by Kaltra in their spiney fin condenser coils, they have also been used for years as evaporator coils in refrigerators.

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Microchannel coil

Microchannel coils fast becoming industry standard


Since the introduction of the next generation all-aluminum microchannel coils, their acceptance in the process and HVAC industries has been nothing short of remarkable! The microchannel coil advantages are the future and rapidly becoming the norm because of the many benefits they provide in new HVAC equipment.

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Microchannel coil

Microchannel heat exchangers: advantages and benefits


All-aluminium microchannel heat exchanging products are now being widely used in the HVAC industry: they provide higher performance, smaller size, features and capabilities not found in traditional fin/tube heat exchangers.

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