CFD performance analysis of finned-tube CO2 gas coolers with various inlet air flow patterns

Journal article


Zhang, X., Ge, Y. and Sun, J. (2020). CFD performance analysis of finned-tube CO2 gas coolers with various inlet air flow patterns. Energy and Built Environment. Volume (1), pp. 233-241. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enbenv.2020.02.004
AuthorsZhang, X., Ge, Y. and Sun, J.
Abstract

A detailed model of three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) on a finned-tube CO2 gas cooler has been developed and validated. The model is then applied to investigate the effect of uniform and mal-distribution inlet airflow profiles on the coil performance. The airflow mal-distribution velocity profiles include linear-up, linear-down and parabolic while the effected coil performance parameters contain airside pressure drop, average airside heat transfer coefficient, approach temperature and coil heating capacity. The model also enables to predict the CO2 refrigerant temperature profile along the coil pipes from refrigerant inlet to outlet at different operation conditions. The simulation results reveal that different types of inlet airflow velocity profiles have significant effects on the gas cooler performance. The uniform airflow velocity profile case shows the best thermal performance of gas cooler. Compared with the cases of linear-up and parabolic air velocity profiles, the linear-down airflow profile can influence more on the coil heat transfer performance. Due to the thermal conduction between neighbour tubes through coil fins, reversed heat transfer phenomenon exists which can be detected and simulated by the CFD model. It is predicted that the linear-down airflow profile can increase greatly the reversed heat transfer phenomenon and thus lead to the highest approach temperature and the lowest heating capacity amongst these four types of airflow profiles. The research method and outcomes presented in this paper can have great potentials to optimize the performance of a CO2 gas cooler and its associated refrigeration system.

KeywordsCO2 finned-tube gas coolerAirflow misdistributionsHeat transfer coefficientCO2 refrigeration systemComputational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modelling
Year2020
JournalEnergy and Built Environment
Journal citationVolume (1), pp. 233-241
PublisherElsevier
ISSN2666-1233
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enbenv.2020.02.004
Web address (URL)https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2666123320300131
Publication dates
Print06 Mar 2020
Publication process dates
Accepted22 Feb 2020
Deposited06 Mar 2023
Accepted author manuscript
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Open
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