Experimental study of a sustainable cooling process hybridizing indirect evaporative cooling and mechanical vapor compression

Qian Chen*, M. Kum Ja, Muhammad Burhan, Muhammad Wakil Shahzad, Doskhan Ybyraiymkul, Hongfei Zheng, Kim Choon Ng

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The hybrid indirect evaporative cooling-mechanical vapor compression (IEC-MVC) process is an emerging cooling technology that combines the advantages of IEC and MVC, i.e., effective temperature and humidity control, high energy efficiency, and low water consumption. This paper presents an experimental study of the hybrid IEC-MVC process. A 1-Rton pilot is fabricated by connecting IEC and MVC in series, and its performance is evaluated under different operating conditions (outdoor air temperature and humidity, air flowrate, compressor frequency). Results revealed that the outdoor air temperature and humidity could be lowered to 5–15 °C and 5–10 g/kg, respectively. The IEC handles 35%–50% of the total cooling load, and the energy consumption can be reduced by 15%–35% as compared to standalone MVC. Moreover, the condensate collected from the evaporator can compensate for >70% of water consumption in IEC, making the system applicable in arid regions. Based on the derived results, a simplified empirical model is developed for rapid evaluation of the IEC-MVC process, and the energy-saving potential in major cities of Saudi Arabia is estimated.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7945-7956
Number of pages12
JournalEnergy Reports
Volume8
Early online date27 Jun 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 27 Jun 2022

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