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The Different Types of Heat Pump Exchangers

A heat pump exchanger uses a series of tubes to transfer hot and cold air. The heat exchanger uses one or more of the following types of flow: Spiral, Cross, Plate and fin, and Cocurrent. This article explains the differences between each type. To learn more, read the following sections. Listed below are the main features of each type of heat pump exchanger. These features ensure that the heat pump exchanger performs as it should.

Spiral flow

Spiral flow heat pump exchanger is a device for heat and fluid transfer. It comprises a pressure-resistant vessel with a number of flow channels. The closure plates on the inner and outer ends of the spiral are offset radially to constrain fluid flow circumferentially. The radially offset openings provide a better heat-transfer coefficient. The flow channels may be formed by the corresponding number of sheet metal spirals.

Type I Spirals are the most common and cost-effective type of heat pump exchanger. Their low pressure drop and high liquid velocity make them suitable for liquid/liquid applications. They are sometimes used in fermenter cooling cases. However, these systems do not achieve sub-cooling. To achieve subcooling, a Type III Spiral is necessary. Hence, a Type II Spiral is not suitable for all applications.

Cross flow

In a heat pump exchanger, the fluids in both the inlet and outlet flow in the same direction. This means that the fluids have a perpendicular flow, while the opposite is true in a shell and tube exchanger. The two fluids transfer heat in opposite directions as they pass over the surface, with temperatures that are close to one another. Cross flow in heat pump exchangers is an excellent option for those concerned about airborne contaminants.

A cross-flow heat exchanger transfers thermal energy from one airstream to the other. Its advantage is that it does not exchange humidity and does not have the risk of short-circuiting. The cross-flow heat exchanger is commonly used in ventilation systems and air-conditioning systems. It consists of thin panels made of aluminum. Its efficiency ranges between forty-and sixty-five percent, depending on its design. Other types of cross-flow exchangers are known as counter-flow and dual-flow heat exchangers.

Plate and fin

The plate and fin heat pump exchanger is a popular option for commercial applications. These heat pumps utilize tubes instead of fins and can operate with different fluid types and temperatures. The fins can be made of either copper or aluminum and can be trimmed to fit the exchanger. Because of their small size, they are more expensive than other types of heat pump exchangers. These heat pumps are most commonly used in low temperature applications.

Because plate fins are spirally wrapped, they are more durable than traditional coils, allowing for higher FPI. Plate fin coils can also have a wide range of densities, ranging from one to 25 FPI. Standard spiral wrapped fins can range from four to 13 FPI, while low-fin-height coils can produce even higher FPI. Spiral wrapped fins, also known as helical fin designs, are essentially a helix-shaped fin that is wrapped around the tube. Plate and fin heat pump exchangers have many advantages over spiral fins.