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Ch 3 Types of Heat Exchangers

Ch 3 Types of Heat Exchangers

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Published by: api-3765936 on Nov 24, 2009
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Chapter 3
Types of Heat Exchangers
Learning Objectives
At the end of this chapter students will:
Know the various ways in which heat exchangers are classified
Have a knowledge of the structure and characteristics of available heat exchanger
Have an understanding of the relative merits of different heat exchanger types
for particular applications.
3.1 Classification of Heat Exchangers

Heat exchangers are described in a number of ways, according to their geometry and their application. Fig. 3.1a-f illustrates the classifications that will be used in this module, however this is not exclusive. Other designations are used in particular industries and standards are relevant to some applications. One important distinction that is not included in Figure 3.1 is that between fired and unfired heat exchangers. In this module we shall focus mainly on unfired heat exchangers although much of the analysis is applicable to fired units, except in the region of the combustion chamber.

The classifications included in Fig. 3.1 are:
Classification by Heat Transfer Process
Classification by Surface Area Density
Classification by Number of Fluid Streams
Classification by Flow Arrangement
Classification by Heat Transfer Mechanisms
Classification by Application and Industry
Classification by Construction
Classification by Heat Transfer Process

Heat may be transferred between two fluids by direct contact, in which case the fluids are permitted to mix. Examples of this arrangement include open cooling towers, many driers and direct contact feed heaters. In this module we shall be dealing


principally with indirect contact heat exchangers in which the two fluid streams are separated by an impermeable wall through which heat is transferred. An alternative arrangement of indirect heat exchanger incorporates a solid storage element which is alternately heated and cooled by the hot and cold process streams, respectively.

Classification by Surface Area Density

Heat exchangers with a high ratio of heat transfer area to volume (and, by implication, small flow passages) are known as compact heat exchangers (CHEs). An arbitrary, but generally accepted boundary between compact and non-compact classifications is of the order of 300m2/m3, although some authors suggest values of 200m2/m3 or 700m2/m3 are more appropriate figures. The spectrum of area densities found in heat exchangers is found in figure 3.2 An area density of 300m2/m3 corresponds to a flow passage hydraulic diameter of 10mm.

Heat Transfer Process
Direct Contact type
Indirect Contact type
Direct Transfer
Fluidised Bed
Figure 3.1a Classification by Heat Transfer Process
Surface Area Density
Figure 3.1b Classification by Surface Area Density
Figure 3.2 Overview of compact heat transfer surfaces
Classification by Number of Fluid Streams

The majority of heat exchangers have two fluid streams - the hot and the cold stream. Electric heaters and heat sinks involve heat transfer from a solid to one fluid. In the process industries it is common for heat transfer to take place between a number of fluid streams within a single unit.

Classification by Flow Arrangement
The three simplest flow arrangements are illustrated in Fig. 3.3. These are described
as parallel or co-current flow (both fluids flowing in the same direction); counter or
countercurrent flow (the fluids flowing in opposite directions); and cross-flow (the fluids
flowing at right angles).Multipass arrangements involve a combination of parallel and
counter flow in parts of the heat exchanger and may include an element of
n, n>2
Number of Fluid Streams
Figure 3.1c Classification by Number of Fluid Streams

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