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An Experimental Investigation on Adsorption Refrigeration System Using Activated Carbon-Methanol

Dim Dim Kumar1, S.A. Mohan Krishna2, S. Kasthurirengan3 and G.B. Krishnappa2

1. Vidyavardhaka College of Engineering, Mysuru 570002, Karnataka, India

2. Department of Mechanical Engineering, Vidyavardhaka College of Engineering, Mysuru 570002, Karnataka, India

3. Center for Cryogenic Technology, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India


Abstract: The soaring prices of fossil fuel and environmental issues have drawn the authors’ attention to the need for, pollution free, reliable and low cost refrigeration. Air conditioning and refrigeration systems are currently by using 30% of total worldwide energy consumption. The global market of air conditioning is expected to reach 78.8 million units in volume sales by 2015. Most of the existing works indicate that adsorption refrigeration system can be used as an alternative to existing conventional refrigeration systems like vapour compression systems. The paper shows that the COP (coefficient of performance), driving temperature and evaporation temperature depend on the working pair used, such as activated carbon-ammonia, silica gel-water, zeolite-water, etc. Hence, the main objective was to characterise silica gel-water, activated carbon-methanol which are locally available and to validate the possibility of adsorption refrigeration occurring under lab conditions by developing a low capacity adsorption system. The working pair was chosen considering the fact that activated carbon has better surface properties (large pore area at the surface of the grain). Based on the characterization results, concepts were developed to build a single-bed low capacity adsorption chiller prototype. Appropriate assembly procedures were carried out. Performance tests were carried out on the developed chiller prototype. The system has been evaluated for various operating temperatures versus cycle time, refrigeration effect versus cycle time.

Key words: Environmental issues, air conditioning, coefficient of performance, activated carbon, methanol, adsorption system, refrigeration effect.
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