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Chapter 9 Refrigeration and Liquefaction

Carnot Refrigerator
Vapor-Compression Cycle
Absorption Refrigeration
Heat Pump
Liquefaction Processes

Refrigerator
9.1 The Carnot Refrigerator
In continuous refrigeration process, heat transfer is
continuous: the heat absorbed at low temperature is
continuously rejected to the surroundings at a higher
temperature

Refrigerator is a reversed heat engine, work is consumed
to transfer heat from a low temperature level to a high
temperature level

The ideal refrigerator, like the ideal heat engine, operates
on a Carnot cycle
TS Diagram of a Carnot Refrigerator
1 2
3
4
T
S
Coefficient of Carnot Refrigerator Performance
Calculated in Eq(9.3) is the maximum value of for the given T
H
and

T
C

conditions.
1. T
C
high, large
2. (T
H
T
C
) small, large

9.2 The Vapor-Compression Cycle
Const T/P
Const T/P
Const H
Coefficient of Performance of a Vapor
Compression Process
the small changes in kinetic energy and potential energy are negligible:

Heat adsorbed at low temperature and rejected at high temperature.

Q
H
= H
4
H
3
and Q
C
= H
2
H
1



The work of compression is:
W =H
3
H
2


coefficient of performance:
|Q
C
|
W
The Rate of Circulation of Refrigerant
The rate of circulation of refrigerant determines the
sizing of the evaporator, compressor, condenser, and
auxiliary equipment.

The rate of circulation of refrigerant can be determined
by the following equation:
PH Diagram for a Refrigeration Process
The vapor-compression
cycle is more commonly
shown on a PH diagram
because they show directly
the required enthalpies.

Although the evaporation
and condensation
processes are show by
constant-pressure paths,
small drops do occur
because of fluid friction.
PH Diagram

Examples (9.12)
The Choice of Refrigerant
Vapor pressure ~ temperature relationship
The vapor pressure at the evaporator temperature
should be larger than atmospheric pressure
The vapor pressure in the condenser should be
reasonably low to reduce the cost of high pressure
equipment
Toxicity
Flammability (non-flammable)
Cost
Corrosion
Environment-friendly
The coefficient of performance of a Carnot
refrigerator is independent of working fluid.

Common Refrigerants
Ammonia, methyl chloride, carbon dioxide, propane and other
hydrocarbons can serve as refrigerants

Halogenated hydrocarbons are commonly used as refrigerants:
Fully halogenated hydrocarbons: CCl
3
F (trichlorofluoromethane or CFC-
11) and CCl
2
F
2
(dichlorodifluoromethane or CFC-12). Damaging to
ozone layer in the atmosphere
Hydrochlorofluorocarbons less than fully halogenated, e.g., CHCl
2
CF
3

(dichlorotrifluoroethane or HCFC-123), which cause relatively little
damage to ozone layer
Hydrofluorocarbons, contains no chloride and causes no ozone
depletion, e.g., CF
3
CH
2
F (tetrafluoroethane or HFC-134a , see Table
9.1 & Fig. G2) and CHF
2
CF
3
(pentafluoroethane or HFC-123)
Difficulties with Large Temperature Difference
When the temperature difference is too large between the
working environment and the required temperature, using one
simple refrigerator may not be able to fulfill the requirement
because:
The refrigerant has to be vapor at atmospheric pressure at the
temperature of required low temperature (e.g. water cannot be
used under 100
o
C), otherwise, the evaporator would have to
operate at vacuum condition, which is infeasible.
The saturation pressure at the temperature of surroundings (T
H
)
shouldnt be too high, otherwise, the compression pressure would
too high to be cost-effective.

A two-stage cascade refrigeration system may be used to serve
this situation.
Two-Stage Cascade Refrigeration System
9.4 Absorption Refrigeration
Advantage: direct use of heat as energy for refrigeration:
higher efficiency due to less irreversible steps
Thermodynamic Calculations
Work requirement of a Carnot refrigerator




Minimal heat required






The pumping work is not included in the above
calculations.

C S
C C
T T
T
W
Q


| |

Advantages of Adsorption Refrigeration


Heat instead of work is required as the
energy for refrigeration

A Carnot engine is actually in play
Example Adsorption Refrigeration Systems




Example I. Using water as refrigerant and lithium bromide
solution as adsorbent
Suitable for applications where refrigeration temperature is
above zero
Concentrate lithium bromide solution absorb water at low
temperature via an exothermal process and is diluted
Dilute lithium bromide solution absorbs heat at high
temperature, water evaporates to steam and is concentrated

Example II. Using ammonia as refrigerant and water as solvent
Ammonia has high solubility in water at low temperature
Ammonia will escape from water at high temperature
Suitable for low temperature applications (the normal boiling
point of ammonia is 33 C and the freezing point -78C.

9.5 The Heat Pump
The heat pump is a reversed refrigerator

For air conditioning
For cooling the building: evaporates inside the building and
compressed high temperature refrigerant cooled and
condensed outside of the building
For heating a building: evaporates outside of the building and
absorb heat from surroundings and the compressed high
temperature refrigerant cooled and condensed inside the
building to release heat.

Minimum work required is calculated by the Carnot cycle
9.6 Liquefaction Processes
Gas is liquefied when it is cooled to a
temperature in the two-phase region

The following ways can be used to cool a gas to
low temperature:
Heat exchange
Expansion with work production (e.g. reversible)
Throttling

Linde Liquefaction Process
Gas is first compressed to high T high P gas
Through cooler and heat exchanger, cooled to low T, high P
Through a throttling process, partial expansion to relatively low P,
low T vapor and the rest liquid
Claude Liquefaction Process
Part of the compressed gas is
used to produce gas, which
results in saturated vapor at
low temperature

The rest is converted to a mix
of saturated liquid and
saturated vapor through a
throttling process

The low temperature saturated
vapors from the expander and
the throttling process
combined to cool the
compressed gas

Of higher efficiency
Its impractical to expand all the gas
through the expander to produce
more work because the expander
cannot handle gas-liquid mixture
Summary
Carnot Refrigerator
Vapor-Compression Cycle
Absorption Refrigeration
Heat Pump
Liquefaction Processes

(Key features, thermodynamic calculations,
advantages and disadvantages)