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Exergoeconomic performances of the desiccant-


evaporative air-conditioning system at different
regeneration and reference temperatures

Napoleon Enteria a,b,c,*, Hiroshi Yoshino b,d, Akashi Mochida b,


Akira Satake e, Rie Takaki f
a
Enteria Grun Energietechnik, Davao 8000, Philippines
b
Tohoku University, Sendai 980-8579, Japan
c
Building Research Institute, Tsukuba 305-0802, Japan
d
Architectural Institute of Japan, Tokyo 108-8414, Japan
e
Maeda Corporation, Tokyo 179-8914, Japan
f
Akita Prefectural University, Akita 010-0195, Japan

article info abstract

Article history: This paper presented the exergoeconomic evaluation of the developed desiccant-
Received 1 June 2014 evaporative air-conditioning system. The developed system was evaluated based on the
Received in revised form steady-state conditions at different regeneration and reference temperatures. The exer-
3 November 2014 goeconomic evaluation method was implemented to the system components and the whole
Accepted 13 November 2014 system to evaluate the exergy efficiency, exergy destruction ratios, cost rates, relative cost
Available online 22 November 2014 differences and exergoeconomic factors. The regeneration and reference temperatures
affected the exergy efficiencies, exergy destruction ratios, cost rates, relative cost differences
Keywords: and exergoeconomic factors. The desiccant wheel, heating coil and evaporative cooler had a
Thermodynamics high cost rate (investment cost, operation and maintenance cost, and exergy destruction
Exergoeconomic cost). The exit air fan, outdoor air fan and evaporative cooler had a high relative cost differ-
Desiccant dehumidification ence. The exit air fan, outdoor air fan and secondary heat exchanger had a high exer-
Evaporative cooling goeconomic factor. Replacement of the desiccant wheel with a higher dehumidification
performance could decrease the high cost rate. A higher efficiency evaporative cooler and
heating coil were needed. Cheaper air fans (outdoor air fans and exit air fans) were needed.
2014 Elsevier Ltd and IIR. All rights reserved.

Performances exergo-e  conomiques d'un syste  me de


conditionnement d'air e  vaporatif a
 de
 shydratant a  diffe
 rentes
tempe ratures de re
 ge
 ne
 ration et de re
 fe
 rence

Mots cles : Thermodynamique ; Exergoe


conomique ; Deshumidification a
 deshydratant ; Refroidissement e
vaporatif

* Corresponding author. Enteria Grun Energietechnik, Davao 8000, Philippines. Tel./fax: 63 (0) 82 305 2226.
E-mail address: enterian2@asme.org (N. Enteria).
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijrefrig.2014.11.007
0140-7007/ 2014 Elsevier Ltd and IIR. All rights reserved.
82 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

Nomenclatures u humidity ratio (g kg1)


4 annual maintenance factor
c cost per exergy rate ($/kW)
exergy efficiency
e specific exergy (kJ kg1)
f exergo-economic factor Superscript
i interest rate CI component investment
mass flow rate (kg s1) OM operating and maintenance
n total operating period (Year)
Subscript
r relative cost difference
1,2.. air state point
t time (sec)
e exit
C_ exergy cost rate ($/h)
D destruction
CRF capital recovery factor
DW desiccant wheel
D destruction
EC evaporative coil
DW desiccant wheel
F fuel
E_ exergy rate (kW)
FOA outdoor air fan
EC evaporative coil
FEA exit air fan
FOA outdoor air fan
HC heating coil
FEA exit air fan
HX1 primary heat exchanger
HC heating coil
HX2 secondary heat exchanger
HX1 primary heat exchanger
i inlet
HX2 secondary heat exchanger
k kth component
IC investment cost ($)
L loss
L loss
mass flow rate
MX flow mixer
N node
N annual operating hour
P product
OMC operation and maintenance cost ($)
, q heat
Q heat transfer rate (kW)
r reference conditions
T temperature ( C)
Tot total
work rate (kW)
w work
Z_ capital cost rate ($/h)
W water
Greek symbols

1. Introduction and Mizutani, 2011), exergy analysis is important (Bejan et al.,


1996). In addition, as different sources of energy have different
Maintenance of the indoor environmental conditions is one of costs, the combined exergy and economic analysis is a very
the energy intensive parts of a house's or building's operation. important factor for the system evaluation. Hence, application
In hot and humid climates, air dehumidification and cooling of the exergoeconomic evaluation is an important component
consume a large percentage of buildings' electric energy (Kong for determining the thermal and economic performance of the
et al., 2012). As people stay indoors most of the time, it is ex- thermal systems (Bejan et al., 1996; Tsatsaronis, 1996).
pected that the maintenance of the indoor environment will Tsatsaronis (1993) presented the review of the exergy
become more intensive as the population explosion, urbani- analysis and the thermo-economic analysis performance of
zation and industrialization became more prevalent (Enteria, the energy systems. It shows that thermo-economic analysis
2013). is an important tool for the determination of the cost for the
The desiccant-based air-conditioning system is one of the system processes and its products for system improvement.
most promising alternative systems in the maintenance of in- Tsatsaronis and Pisa (1994) conducted an exergoeconomic
door temperature and humidity. The desiccant-based system evaluation of the CGAM problem (Valero et al., 1994). This is a
can control air thermal contents (latent and sensible) (Enteria, predefined problem of the gas turbine engine. It shows that
2013), micro-organisms (viruses and bacteria) (Goswami et al., the exergoeconomic concept is a powerful tool in the deter-
1997) and chemical contents (such as VOCs) (Fang et al., 2008). mination of the cost sources and for the optimization of the
As the system can be supported by different energy sources, it is complex system. Hence the exergoeconomic technique is a
flexible depending on the on-site available energy sources very important tool for thermal system designers in the
(Enteria and Mizutani, 2011). However, since the desiccant- determination of thermodynamic inefficiencies and costs in
based air-conditioning system consumes energy from the thermal system (Tsatsaronis, 1996). Abusoglu and Kanoglu
different sources (such as electric, thermal and hydro) (Enteria (2009a, 2009b) conducted a review of the different
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8 83

methodologies for exergoeconomic analysis. It shows that higher humidity ratio due to the regeneration process in the
with using exergoeconomic methods, the cost of the streams' desiccant wheel. The air at state 11 is exhausted by the fan
flows and processes in the complex system from input to (FEA) of state 12.
output will be determined. Hence, the available resources will
be assessed for sustainable development. 2.1.2. Test cases
Most of the exergoeconomic analyses were applied in In the experimental evaluation, the air conditions for the out-
complex thermal energy systems such as combined heat and door air (Point 1) are set at a value of 30  C dry bulb temperature
power (CHP) systems (Tsatsaronis and Moran, 1997; Sahoo, (2% accuracy) and 60% relative humidity (10% accuracy)
2008), micro combined heat and power in buildings (16.1 g kg1). This is the standard summer testing condition in
(Campos-Celador et al., 2012), combined and multi stage flash Japan. The return air (RA) is set at a value of 26  C dry bulb
desalination (Hosseini et al., 2011), integrated solar combined temperature (1% accuracy) and 55% relative humidity (1% ac-
cycle system (Baghernejad and Yaghoubi, 2011), cogeneration curacy) (11.6 g kg1). This is the standard indoor air condition in
system (Abusoglu and Kanoglu, 2009a, 2009b) and combined Japan. The volumetric flow rates for the outdoor air (OA) and
cycle power plant (Kwak et al., 2003; Ahmadi and Dincer, exit air (EA) are set at 200 m3 h1. The volumetric flow rates for
2011). However, there is little research on the exer- the return air (RA) and supply air (SA) are set at 100 m3 h1. The
goeconomic application in heating, ventilating and air- evaporative water inlet temperature is measured at an average
conditioning systems. For example, Ghaebi et al. (2011), 21.6  C and controlled by a water heater to mimic the temper-
using the thermo-economic analysis of combined cooling, ature of the supply water pipe. The system is evaluated using
heating and power systems with a gas turbine shows that a the four different regeneration temperatures that can be sup-
heat recovery steam generator with an absorption chiller will ported by solar energy or low temperature waste-heat thermal
be highly efficient, as flue gas can be used as a chiller thermal energy sources. The regeneration temperatures used in the
source. For a desiccant-based system, Camargo et al. (2003) experimentation are 60  C, 65  C, 70  C and 75  C. Table 1 shows
conducted an exergoeconomic analysis through the exer- the values for the specific exergy (e), exergy cost (c_ ) and exergy
getic manufacturing cost (EMC) of the evaporative air- _ for the different states inside the system for four
cost rate (C)
conditioning system. It shows that a minimum regeneration cases of regeneration temperatures for the reference state of
temperature and regeneration air-process air (R/P) ratio are 15  C and 15 g kg1.
advantageous for the EMC. Hurdugan et al. (2013) conducted
an exergoeconomic evaluation of the desiccant cooling sys-
tem. The results show that the thermodynamic loss rate to
2.2. Exergetic analysis
capital cost increases as reference temperature increases.
The general formulations for exergy analyses of the thermal
This paper presents the exergoeconomic evaluation of the
system are presented in Eqs. (1) and (2) and applied in the
developed desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system
desiccant-evaporative cooling system thermodynamic model
(Enteria et al., 2013). The study objectives are to determine the
shown in Fig. 1.
exergoeconomic performance of the system's components at
Using the mass balance, the mass rate balance for kth
different regeneration and reference temperatures, and at the
component of the system is.
same time, to evaluate the components of the system that
need upgrading to increase exergoeconomic performances X X
N
  M
  dmk
and possibly reduce the cost rates. m_ j;i k
 m_ i;e k
(1)
j1 i1
dt

Based on exergy rate balance, the exergy rate balance for


2. Methodology kth component of the system is.

X       X  
 Tr
2.1. System description me ee Wk 1  Qk mi ei (2a)
e
k Tk i
k

2.1.1. Processes
or
The system consists of the desiccant wheel, sensible heat
exchangers and a direct evaporative cooler (Enteria et al., X   X
Ee;k Ew;k Eq;k Ei;k (2b)
2013). In Fig. 1, the air from state 1 to state 3 is dehumidified e i
by the desiccant wheel (DW). The air from state 3 is pre-cooled
The exergy associated with work transfer over the system
by a primary sensible heat exchanger (HX1) and split into two
boundary is equal to the work transfer (Tsatsaronis, 1993)
streams of air (states 4 and 40 ). The air from state 40 is cooled by
a direct evaporative cooler (EC). The air of state 4 is sensibly  
Ew;k Ek (3a)
cooled by a secondary heat exchanger (HX2) from state 4 to
state 5. The air at state 5 becomes the supply air, and it has the The exergy associated with heat transfer is given as
same humidity ratio as the processed air at state 3. The air at (Tsatsaronis, 1993)
state 6 is mixed with the return air (state 7) for the pre-heating   
 Tr 
of hot air as shown at state 9. The hot air at state 9 is heated by Eq;k 1  Qk (3b)
Tk
the air heating coil (HC) to become the regeneration air (state
10). The regeneration air at state 10 is used to remove the Based on Fig. 1 and using the general formulation pre-
moisture in the desiccant wheel (DW). The air at state 11 has a sented in Eqs. (1) and (2), the fuel, product and loss definition
84 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

Fig. 1 e Schematic diagram of the desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system under exergo-economic evaluation: (a)
Total experimental set-up showing the controlled chambers and test chamber, and; (b) Desiccant-evaporative air-
conditioning system under study.

(Valero et al., 2006) are presented in Table 2. The productive X    X  


purpose of a process unit or component measured in terms of Ce;k Cw;k Cq;k Ci;k Zk (4b)
e i
exergy is called the product. The exergy flow that is consumed
to create the product is called fuel (Valero et al., 2006). Where the total kth total component cost rate is the sum of the
kth component capital cost rate and kth component operating
2.3. Exergo-economic analysis and maintenance cost rate (Bejan et al., 1996).

  CI  OM
The general formulations for exergoeconomic analyses of the Zk Zk Zk (5)
thermal system are presented in Eqs. (4)e(7) and applied in the
The kth component cost rate is expressed based on
desiccant-evaporative cooling system thermodynamic model
(Ahmadi and Dincer, 2011).
shown in Fig. 1.
k 4CRF
The cost rate balance for the kth component of the system  OM ZOM
Zk (6)
based on the exergy rate and cost per unit exergy (Bejan et al., N3600
1996)
The kth component purchase equipment cost is in US
X   

 

 X    dollars. The annual maintenance factor (4) is assumed to be
ce Ee cw W cq Eq ci Ei Zk (4a)
k k k k
1.1. The annual operating hours (N) of the system are
e i

or
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8
Table 1 e Air states in different stages at different regeneration temperatures.
State Temperature, T ('C) Humidity ratio, u (kg kg1) Specific exergy, e (kJ kg1) Exergy cost, c ($/kJ) Exergy cost rate, C_ ($/h)
                
60 C 65 C 70 C 75 C 60 C 65 C 70 C 75 C 60 C 65 C 70 C 75 C 60 C 65 C 70 C 75 C 60 C 65  C 70  C 75  C
Reference Outdoor air (State 1) Outdoor air (State 1) e e e
1 30.1 30.1 30.2 30.1 0.0166 0.0165 0.0166 0.0165 0.0000 0.0000 0.0000 0.0000 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00
2 32.0 32.1 32.2 32.3 0.0166 0.0165 0.0166 0.0165 0.0062 0.0068 0.0071 0.0079 4.0E-02 3.7E-02 3.6E-02 3.4E-02 5.8E-02 6.0E-02 6.1E-02 6.2E-02
3 49.3 52.0 54.4 57.6 0.0118 0.0111 0.0108 0.0103 0.7102 0.9144 1.1081 1.3959 1.9E-02 2.2E-02 5.7E-02 2.9E-02 3.2E00 4.6E00 1.5E01 9.3E00
40 36.9 38.2 39.4 40.9 0.0118 0.0111 0.0108 0.0103 0.1808 0.2441 0.2983 0.3773 1.9E-02 2.2E-02 5.7E-02 2.9E-02 4.2E-01 6.4E-01 2.1E00 1.3E00
4 30.1 30.8 31.4 32.2 0.0118 0.0111 0.0108 0.0103 0.1045 0.1366 0.1600 0.1920 1.9E-02 2.2E-02 5.7E-02 2.9E-02 2.2E-01 3.3E-01 1.0E00 6.1E-01
50 22.9 22.9 23.0 23.1 0.0167 0.0167 0.0166 0.0167 0.0925 0.0914 0.0903 0.0860 4.1E-02 6.1E-02 1.9E-01 1.3E-01 4.6E-01 6.8E-01 2.1E00 1.3E00
5 26.0 26.4 26.7 27.1 0.0117 0.0110 0.0107 0.0103 0.1391 0.1660 0.1798 0.2030 1.9E-02 2.2E-02 5.7E-02 2.9E-02 3.0E-01 4.0E-01 1.1E00 6.5E-01
6 26.8 27.2 27.6 28.1 0.0167 0.0167 0.0166 0.0167 0.0190 0.0149 0.0113 0.0072 1.7E-01 3.5E-01 1.4E00 1.5E00 4.1E-01 6.3E-01 2.0E00 1.3E00
7 26.3 26.4 26.7 26.9 0.0117 0.0116 0.0117 0.0119 0.1353 0.1317 0.1316 0.1181 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00 0.0E00
8 26.8 27.1 27.4 27.7 0.0143 0.0143 0.0143 0.0143 0.0412 0.0377 0.0353 0.0324 4.2E-02 7.2E-02 2.4E-01 1.8E-01 4.1E-01 6.3E-01 2.0E00 1.3E00
9 42.1 44.0 45.7 47.8 0.0143 0.0143 0.0143 0.0143 0.2637 0.3406 0.4206 0.5406 4.3E-02 5.4E-02 1.6E-01 7.8E-02 2.6E00 4.3E00 1.6E01 9.8E00
10 60.7 64.6 68.5 74.2 0.0143 0.0143 0.0143 0.0143 1.5235 1.9157 2.3475 3.0726 7.9E-03 1.0E-02 3.0E-02 1.4E-02 2.8E00 4.5E00 1.6E01 1.0E01
11 39.6 41.5 43.1 45.2 0.0189 0.0194 0.0194 0.0204 0.1752 0.2534 0.3147 0.4404 7.9E-03 1.0E-02 3.0E-02 1.4E-02 3.2E-01 6.0E-01 2.2E00 1.4E00
12 40.2 41.9 43.2 45.4 0.0189 0.0194 0.0194 0.0204 0.1942 0.2665 0.3185 0.4489 7.9E-03 1.0E-02 3.0E-02 1.4E-02 3.6E-01 6.3E-01 2.2E00 1.5E00
EC_Water 21.6 21.7 21.6 21.7 e e e e 0.5048 0.5003 0.5141 0.5034 3.3E-05 3.3E-05 3.3E-05 3.3E-05 1.0E-05 1.1E-05 1.2E-05 1.3E-05
F(OA)_Electric e e e e e e e e e e e e 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 3.3E-02 3.5E-02 3.6E-02 3.7E-02
F(EA)_Electric e e e e e e e e e e e e 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 1.0E-02 5.9E-03 1.5E-03 3.0E-03
DW_Electric e e e e e e e e e e e e 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 2.2E-03 2.2E-03 2.2E-03 2.2E-03
HC_Electric e e e e e e e e e e e e 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 6.1E-05 1.6E-01 1.8E-01 2.0E-01 2.3E-01

85
86 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

component kth. It means that when the component exergy


Table 2 e Desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system
efficiency is high, the exergy destructed by the component or
components equivalent exergy fuel and product
formulation. irreversibility is lowered. The exergetic efficiency is
(Tsatsaronis, 1993)
Components Fuel (C_ F) Product (C_ P)
     
F(OA) EFOA E2  E1 EP;k ED;k EL;k
  
Exit air fan (F(EA)) EFEA E12  E11 2k  1  (8)
    
Desiccant wheel (DW) EDW E10  E11 E3  E2 EF;k EF;k
0 1
     As the system kth component becomes more efficient, the
Primary heat exchanger (HX-1) E3  @E40 E
2
4A
E9  E8
rate of exergy destruction becomes lower. For the system
    components to become more efficient, minimization of exergy
Secondary heat exchanger (HX-2) E4  E5 E6  E50
  
Heating coil (HC) EHC E9 E10 destruction is very important as discussed by Bejan et al.
  
Evaporative cooler (EC) EEC E40 E50 (1996) for different techniques. The exergy destruction ratio
(Tsatsaronis, 1993)

expressed as 2308 or 48 h per week, which is the expected ED;k
yD;k  (9)
operating hours of the air-conditioning system when installed EF;Tot
in buildings. The capital recovery factor (CRF) is expressed as
(Bejan et al., 1996) The cost of exergy destruction is a hidden cost for a process
in the system components. Therefore, the determination of
n
i1 i the exergy destruction cost rate is defined as (Tsatsaronis,
CRF n (7)
1 i  1 1993)
The interest rate (i) is 10% and the total operating period (n)  

of the system is 10 years with no salvage value. The kth CD;k cF;k ED;k (10)
component operation and maintenance cost is assumed to be cF;k is the kth component fuel average cost per unit of exergy.
20% of the kth component purchase cost. The kth component This is the cost per unit of exergy flow that is consumed to
purchase cost was referenced on the effect of kth component create the product called fuel. When the system component is

cost size (Bejan et al., 1996). The cost size is the cost of the efficient, it is expected that the destruction of exergy ED;k will

component based on its capacity. be small; hence, the cost rate CD;k of exergy destructed be-

Based on Fig. 1 and using the general formulation pre- comes smaller. It is also the same for the exergy loss EL;k for
sented in Eqs. (3)e(6), the fuel product and loss definition are each component. The exergy loss for the system components
presented in Table 2. The equivalent exergetic cost rate bal- is (Tsatsaronis, 1993)
ances with the auxiliary equations which are presented in
 
Table 3. The technical specifications and the equivalent CL;k cF;k EL;k (11)
component purchase cost together with the operating and
The relative cost difference presented the cost sources
maintenance cost are presented in Table 4.
associated with the components of the system (Tsatsaronis,
1993).
2.4. Performance indices
 CI  OM
cP;k  cF;k 1  2k Zk Zk
rk  (12)
The system is evaluated based on the exergoeconomic per- cF;k 2k cF;k EP;k
formances of its components and its contribution to the total
system. The relative cost difference should be as small as possible.
The exergy efficiency is the ratio of the product exergy This means that the cost per exergy rate of product and fuel
produced per the fuel exergy utilized by the system should be as small as possible. When the relative cost

Table 3 e Desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system components exergetic cost rate balance and corresponding
auxiliary equations.
Components Cost rate balance Auxiliary equations
   
Outdoor air fan (F(OA)) ZFOA CFOA C2  C1 c1 0
   
Exit air fan (F(EA)) ZFEA CFEA C12  C11 c12 c11
     
Desiccant wheel (DW) ZDW CDW C10  C11 C3  C2 c11 c12
2 0 13
     
Primary heat exchanger (HX-1) ZHX1 4C3  @C40 C
2
4 A5
C9  C8 c4 c4' c4

    
Secondary heat exchanger (HX-2) ZHX2 C4  C5 C6  C50 c4 c5
   
Heating coil (HC) ZHC CHC C9 C10
   
Evaporative cooler (EC) ZEC CEC C40 C50
  
Flow mixer (MX) C6 C7 C8 c7 0
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8 87

Table 4 e Cost information and technical specifications used in the exergo-economic evaluation of the desiccant-
evaporative air-conditioning system.
Components IC, Zk ($) OMC, Zk ($) Technical specifications
Outdoor air fan (FOA) 268 54 Maximum flow capacity: 400 m3 h1
Exit air fan (FEA) 268 54 Maximum flow capacity: 400 m3 h1
Desiccant wheel (DW) 6743 1349 0.4 m (Diameter) and 0.2 m (Thickness)
Primary heat exchanger (HX1) 236 47 Maximum flow capacity: 400 m3 h1
Secondary heat exchanger (HX2) 179 36 Maximum flow capacity: 200 m3 h1
Heating coil (HC) 236 47 Maximum flow capacity: 400 m3 h1
Evaporative cooler (EC) 429 86 Maximum flow capacity: 200 m3 h1

difference and cost rates are high with, it means that it is not loss. For example, when the exergoeconomic factor is low, it is to
efficient and will be expensive to operate. be expected that the component exergy efficiency will be low-
The exergoeconomic factor is the ratio of the contribution ered and will need improvement to increase the performance.
from non-exergy-related cost to the total cost increase with On the other hand, when the exergoeconomic factor is high, it is
the components of the system (Tsatsaronis, 1993). expected that the component operation and cost will be more
expensive. There are established values for typical components

Z based on the exergoeconomic factor (See Bejan et al., 1996).
fk  k  (13)
  
When evaluating the system and its components, it is very
Zk cF;k ED;k EL:k
important to determine and rank the cost rate and evaluate
The exergoeconomic factor is very important to determine how to change the system design with a high cost rate.
the relationship between the non exergy related cost such as the Evaluate the relative cost rate when the cost rates are very
operation and investment cost to the exergy destruction and high. Evaluate the system components major cost source

_ and, (c) System


_ (b) System cost per total exergy input (C);
Fig. 2 e System total exergy input: (a) System exergy rate input (E);
_
total exergy input cost rate (c).
88 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

_ and, (c)
_ (b) System cost per exergy output (C);
Fig. 3 e System total exergy output (State 5): (a) System exergy rate output (E);
_
System exergy output cost rate (c).

using the exergoeconomic factor. Bejan et al. (1996) discussed


the compressive method in system analysis and optimization. 3. Results and discussion
The system total exergy input is the electric energy to drive
the air fans, desiccant wheel motor, heating coil and the water 3.1. System exergy input and output
for the evaporative cooler as.
3.1.1. System input
     
ETot EFOA EFEA EDW EECW EHC (14) Fig. 2a shows the system total exergy input based on different
regenerations and reference temperatures. The exergy input
The system exergy loss is the exit air (State 12). State 12 is consists of the electricity for the air fan motors, desiccant
the air dumped into the environment. The system exergy wheel motor, heating coil and water exergy for the evapora-
product is the condition of the supply air (State 5): the purpose tive cooler. It shows that the total exergy input decreases as
of the air-conditioning system is to produce a cool and dry air the reference temperature increases. The exergy input to the
suitable for the maintenance of the indoor environment. The system increases as the regeneration temperature increases.
production of the supply air should be as inexpensive as The major contribution to the increase of system exergy input
possible. is from the heating coil. Fig. 2b shows that there is a gradual
The total cost rate for the system is presented as. increase of the exergy cost from the reference temperature of
      X  0  Ce20  C; the cost of exergy input gradually decreases from
CTot CFOA CFEA CDW CECW CHC Zk (15) 20  C to 30  C. This pattern is mainly affected by the exergy
k
input in the evaporative cooler water consumption which is
This is total cost rate (investment cost and operation and dependent on the reference temperature. Fig. 2c shows the
maintenance cost) to support the air fans, desiccant wheel, exergy input cost rate which has the same pattern as input
heating coil and evaporative coil of the system. exergy to the system shown in Fig. 2a. This means that the
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8 89

_ and, (c) System


_ (b) System cost per exergy loss (C);
Fig. 4 e System total exergy loss (State 12): (a) System exergy rate loss (E);
_
exergy loss cost rate (c).

exergy input cost rate greatly depends on the exergy rate. comparison of dehumidification performance). Hence, at the
Based on the results, it is costly to operate the system at a regeneration temperature of 70  C, the cost of the exergy
higher reference temperature. In other words, it is expensive output is expensive as dehumidification performance is not
to operate the system at a higher outdoor temperature. In proportional to the input thermal exergy. However, at the
addition, as the regeneration temperature increases, the sys- regeneration temperature of 75  C, the cost of the exergy
tem operation becomes more costly. Hence, operation of the output is cheaper than at 70  C. This is due to the increase of
system with regeneration temperature sufficient to dehu- the system dehumidification performance when the regen-
midify the air needed for supply is important to lessen the cost eration temperature is increase to 75  C. Fig. 3c shows the
of operation. exergy output cost rate is minimal at the reference tempera-
ture of 25  C. This means that when the reference temperature
3.1.2. System output is at 25  C, the exergy cost rate of the supply air is lower. This
Fig. 3a shows the exergy output of the system represented by also means that it is cheaper to operate the system in the
the exergy of the supply air (E_ 5). The exergy of the supply air production of supply air at a temperature near the comfort-
decreases as the reference temperature increases from 0  C to able temperature.
25  C; the exergy of the supply air increases as the reference
temperature increases from 25  C. The exergy of the supply is 3.1.3. System loss
at a minimum at the near comfortable temperature. The cost Fig. 4a shows the exergy of state 12 which is the system exergy
per exergy output increases as the reference temperature in- loss (E_ 12). The system exergy loss decreases as the reference
creases, as shown in Fig. 3b. The cost of exergy output is more temperature increases, and the exergy loss increases as the
expensive for the regeneration temperature of 70  C. Based on regeneration temperature increases. The same is true for the
the state of the air shown by Enteria et al. (2013), the dehu- pattern of the exergy input; the exergy loss decreases as the
midification performance at the regeneration temperature of input exergy to the system becomes more expensive. Fig. 4b
70  C has a small difference compared to the regeneration shows that the cost of exergy loss increases as the reference
temperature of 65  C (Please see Table 1, states 1 and 5 for temperature increases. In addition, the cost of exergy loss is
90 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

Fig. 5 e Outdoor Air Fan (OAF) exergo-economic results: (a) Exergy destruction ratio; (b) Exergy destruction cost rate; (c)
Relative cost difference, and; (d) Exergo-economic factor.

higher at the regeneration temperature of 70  C. This higher exergy destruction ratio decreases as the regeneration tem-
cost of exergy loss at 70  C is due to the high input exergy, perature increases. This trend is affected by other system
which is not proportional to the increase of system dehu- components which have a higher exergy destruction as the
midification performance. Hence, there is a large exergy loss regeneration temperature increases. Fig. 5b shows that the
resulting in it becoming more expensive at the 70  C regen- exergy destruction cost rate for the outdoor air fan increases
eration temperature. Fig. 4c shows that the exergy loss cost as the reference temperature increases, and that the exergy
rate decreases as the reference temperature increases. In destruction cost rate increases as the regeneration tempera-
addition, the exergy loss cost is higher at the regeneration ture increases. Fig. 5c shows that the relative cost difference
temperature of 70  C. In summary, the system exergy loss is increases as the reference temperature increases. The relative
high at the 70  C regeneration temperature due to the lower cost difference is almost the same as for a different regener-
system dehumidification performance at this regeneration ation temperature. The outdoor air fan exergetic efficiency is
temperature. It also shows that exergy loss becomes more the same at different regeneration temperatures but de-
expensive as the reference temperature increases. As the creases as the reference temperature increases. Fig. 5d shows
system is expected to supply cooler and dehumidified air that the exergoeconomic factor decreases as the reference
which is important at higher temperatures, the exergy loss at temperature increases. Furthermore, it shows that the exer-
the higher reference temperature becomes more expensive. goeconomic factor decreases as the regeneration temperature
increases. This situation is due to the increase of exergy
3.2. Components input and outputs destruction upon the increase of reference and regeneration
temperature.
3.2.1. Outdoor air fan (FOA)
Fig. 5a shows that the exergy destruction ratio increases as the 3.2.2. Exit air fan (FEA)
reference temperature increases. This trend is due to the Fig. 6a shows that the exergy destruction ratio decreases from
exergy destruction which is a function of a reference tem- 60  C to 70  C and then increases as the regeneration tem-
perature. Hence, for an outdoor air fan, the exergy destruction perature increases to 75  C. The exergy destruction ratio does
increases as the reference temperature increases, and the not change as much as the reference temperature increases,
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8 91

Fig. 6 e Exit Air Fan (EAF) exergo-economic results: (a) Exergy destruction ratio; (b) Exergy destruction cost rate; (c) Relative
cost difference, and; (d) Exergo-economic factor.

unlike the outdoor air fan (FOA) which increases as the refer- contribution of heating coil exergy destruction: it increases as
ence temperature increases. The trend of the exergy the reference and regeneration temperature increase. Fig. 7b
destruction ratio follows the exergy destruction rate. It also shows the increasing exergy destruction cost rate as the
shows that the exergy destruction ratio is less than the out- regeneration temperature increases. It shows that the exergy
door air fan as the frictional loss for the exit air fan is lower destruction cost rate is almost the same as the reference
than that of the outdoor air fan. Fig. 6b shows that the exergy temperature increases. This is due to the fact that the exergy
destruction cost rate is higher at a lower regeneration tem- cost rate is mainly a function of the exergy input to the heating
perature compared to a high regeneration temperature. This coil electric energy consumption. Fig. 7c shows the increasing
situation is due to the fact that at lower regeneration tem- relative cost difference as the reference temperature in-
perature, the exergy destruction is higher. Fig. 6c shows that creases. The change of the relative cost difference is minimal
the relative cost difference increases as the reference tem- even as the regeneration temperature increases. Fig. 7d shows
perature increases. In addition, the relative cost difference is the decreasing exergoeconomic factor as the reference tem-
high at 70  C, and the relative cost difference is higher at the perature increases as well as the regeneration temperature. It
70  C regeneration temperature. This result is due to the lower shows that at higher regeneration and reference temperature,
system performance at 70  C. Fig. 6d shows that the exer- the cost of exergy destruction becomes higher and more
goeconomic factor is higher at 70  C. The exergoeconomic significant.
factor is almost the same for the different reference
temperatures. 3.2.4. Desiccant wheel (DW)
Fig. 8a shows that the exergy destruction ratio for the desic-
3.2.3. Heating coil (HC) cant wheel increases as the regeneration temperature in-
Fig. 7a shows an increasing exergy destruction ratio as the creases from 65  C to 75  C, particularly at the higher reference
reference and regeneration temperature increases for the temperature. It also shows that for the lower regeneration
heating coil. This trend is due to the large percentage of temperature, the effect of the reference temperature is visible.
92 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

Fig. 7 e Heating Coil (HC) exergo-economic results: (a) Exergy destruction ratio; (b) Exergy destruction cost rate; (c) Relative
cost difference, and; (d) Exergo-economic factor.

It also shows that the exergy destruction ratio of the desiccant increasing exergy destruction ratio of the primary heat
wheel decreases as the reference temperature increases, most exchanger is due to the increase of entropy generation, as heat
particularly at the lower regeneration temperatures. The transfer increases as the temperature difference between the
desiccant dehumidification performance is effective when the two increasing air streams. It also shows that exergy
air temperature is lower, particularly while using lower tem- destruction increases as the reference temperature increases.
perature regeneration air. Fig. 8b shows an increased exergy Hence, exergy destruction depends on the reference temper-
destruction cost rate as the regeneration temperature in- ature. Fig. 9b shows the increasing exergy destruction rate as
creases. The exergy destruction cost rate is high at the the reference temperature increases. The exergy destruction
regeneration temperature of 70  C. This means that exergy cost rate is high at the regeneration temperature of 70  C. The
destruction is expensive at 70  C as the desiccant wheel high exergy cost rate at the 70  C regeneration temperature is
dehumidification performance is not proportional, such as it mainly caused by the non-proportional increase of the
is at 65  C and 75  C (Enteria et al., 2013). Fig. 8c shows the desiccant wheel dehumidification performance in which
increasing relative cost difference as the reference tempera- there is an increase of the desiccant wheel process tempera-
ture increases. It further shows that the relative cost differ- ture that results in a high exergy destruction cost rate. Fig. 9c
ence is lower at 70  C. As presented by the exergoeconomic shows the increasing relative cost difference as the reference
factor in Fig. 8d, it shows that the exergoeconomic factor de- temperature increases. This is most visible in the sudden in-
creases as the reference temperature increases. Furthermore, crease of the reference temperature from 15  C. Based on the
it shows that it is higher at 60  C and lower at 70  C. This exergetic efficiency of the primary heat exchanger, there is a
means that high exergy destruction at the 70  C regeneration sudden drop of the exergetic efficiency from a reference
temperature resulted in a lower exergoeconomic factor. temperature of 15  C. Fig. 9d shows the decreasing exer-
goeconomic factor as the reference temperature increases. It
3.2.5. Primary heat exchanger (HX1) also shows that the exergoeconomic factor is lower at 70  C.
Fig. 9a shows the increasing exergy destruction ratio as the Hence, as the regeneration temperature increases, the exer-
reference and regeneration temperatures increase. The goeconomic factor decreases.
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8 93

Fig. 8 e Desiccant Wheel (DW) exergo-economic results: (a) Exergy destruction ratio; (b) Exergy destruction cost rate; (c)
Relative cost difference, and; (d) Exergo-economic factor.

3.2.6. Secondary heat exchanger (HX2) performances affecting the primary heat exchanger and
Fig. 10a shows that the exergy destruction ratio increases as evaporative cooler, which is the source of inlet exergy.
the reference and regeneration temperature increases. The
increase of the exergy destruction ratio is mainly due to the 3.2.7. Evaporative cooler (EC)
increase of entropy generation as the two streams of air Fig. 11a shows the decrease of the exergy destruction ratio as
temperature as well as the reference temperature increase. the reference temperature increases. It also shows the in-
Fig. 10b shows the parabolic exergy destruction cost rate crease of the exergy destruction ratio as regeneration in-
which is higher at the 20  C reference temperature and at the creases. The increase of the exergy destruction ratio as the
70  C regeneration temperature. The trend of the exergy regeneration temperature increases is due to the greater
destruction cost rate of the secondary heat exchanger is amount of water absorbed by the air for the cooling effect. The
affected by the behavior of the primary heat exchanger and higher absorption of water results in higher entropy genera-
the evaporative cooler. The effect of the primary heat tion. Fig. 11b shows the decrease of the exergy destruction
exchanger and the evaporative cooler determines the cost rate as the reference temperature increases. It shows that
behavior of the secondary heat exchanger. Fig. 10c shows the at 70  C, the exergy destruction cost rate is higher. The higher
relative cost difference which is higher at the 25  C reference exergy destruction cost rate at 70  C is mainly due to the
temperature and the 65  C regeneration temperature. Based condition of the air at state 4 (See Fig. 1). Fig. 11c shows the
on the exergetic efficiency of the secondary heat exchanger, it increase of the relative cost difference from 0  C to 20  C. The
has the lowest efficiency at 25  C. Fig. 10d shows the relative cost difference decreases from 20  C to 30  C. The
decreasing exergoeconomic factor as the reference tempera- relative cost difference is a little higher for the high regener-
ture increases from 0  C to 25  C. It shows that exer- ation temperature. The high relative cost difference at 20  C
goeconomic factor is lower for the regeneration temperature and 25  C is due to the lower exergy efficiency at these refer-
of 70  C. Hence this is affected by the exergoeconomic ence temperatures (Enteria et al., 2013). Fig. 11d shows the
94 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

Fig. 9 e Primary Heat Exchanger (HX-1) exergo-economic results: (a) Exergy destruction ratio; (b) Exergy destruction cost
rate; (c) Relative cost difference, and; (d) Exergo-economic factor.

highest exergoeconomic factor at a higher reference temper- cooler for processing the supply air. Comparing the outdoor
ature (30  C) and a lower regeneration temperature (60  C). air fan and exit air fan it can be said that the exit air fan has
a higher exergy efficiency mainly due to the lower pressure
3.3. Performances with outdoor air (state 1) as reference resistance in the exit air stream than in the outdoor air
conditions stream. Also, the results show that the efficiency of the air
fan is very low. This is due to the many duct elbows,
3.3.1. Exergy efficiency comparison dampers and the orifice flow meter to control and direct the
Fig. 12 shows the comparison among the different compo- air flow in the experimental chamber, which cause the air
nents of exergetic efficiency at reference conditions of 15  C fan to operate at a higher speed or higher consumption with
and 15 g kg1. It shows that the secondary heat exchanger a particular air flow rate.
has the highest exergetic efficiency followed by the primary
heat exchanger and desiccant wheel. Air fans (FOA and FEA) 3.3.2. Total and exergy destruction cost rate comparison
have the lowest exergetic efficiency, followed by the evap- Fig. 13 shows the total cost rate for the system operation
orative cooler and heating coil. It also shows that the effect (purchase cost, operation and maintenance cost and exergy
of the regeneration temperature on the exergetic efficiency destruction cost). It shows that the total cost rate is higher at
is minimal for different components for these reference the regeneration temperature of 70  C. This is due to the lower
conditions except for the evaporative cooler and the sec- dehumidification performance of the system and the high
ondary heat exchanger. At a higher regeneration tempera- exergy destruction for some components at this regeneration
ture, the processed air becomes drier and results in higher temperature. It shows that the total cost rate is higher for the
water consumption in the evaporative cooler to make it desiccant wheel and primary heat exchanger and evaporative
more saturated compared to the lower regeneration tem- cooler at the regeneration temperature of 70  C. In the case of
perature. This is also translated to the efficiency of the the heating coil, the total cost rate becomes higher as the
secondary heat exchanger which relied on the evaporative regeneration temperature increases. In the case of the air fans
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8 95

Fig. 10 e Secondary Heat Exchanger (HX-2) exergo-economic results: (a) Exergy destruction ratio; (b) Exergy destruction cost
rate; (c) Relative cost difference, and; (d) Exergo-economic factor.

and secondary heat exchanger, the total cost rate is almost the the installed exit fan could be changed to lower the capital
same for the different regeneration temperatures. cost. The outdoor air fan efficiency could be increased by
reducing the air resistance inside the system or redesigning
3.3.3. Relative cost difference comparison the system with minimal pressure loss. The primary heat
Fig. 14 shows the relative cost difference for different com- exchanger could be improved by increasing its performance
ponents for the 15  C reference temperature and a 15 g kg1 by using metal based instead of paper based material as is
reference humidity ratio. It shows that the relative cost dif- used at present. In comparison with the secondary heat
ference is higher for the air fans. It shows that exit air fans exchanger, the primary heat exchanger has a lower perfor-
have a higher relative cost difference at the regeneration mance. It is expected that a higher performance heat
temperature of 70  C. It also shows that other components exchanger would be expensive. The exergoeconomic factor
have a lower relative cost difference: increasing the air fans' for the evaporative cooler is low coupled with low exergy ef-
exergy efficiency could increase the relative cost difference ficiency. Hence, the evaporative cooler could be improved by
through the minimization of air resistance in the system. It using a high efficiency evaporative cooler even with the in-
shows that as most of the system components' relative cost crease of capital investment. At present, the falling film type is
difference is low, it needs high performance components to used, but a membrane type or spray type could be an option.
reduce the exergy destruction and increase the exergetic ef- The heating coil could be improved by selecting a high per-
ficiency. However, capital investment should be evaluated to formance air heater such as a plate-type as opposed to a coil-
determine the effect of increasing the exergetic efficiency of type even with the increase of capital investment. The desic-
the components which might also increase the exer- cant wheel shows the need for a higher performance dehu-
goeconomic factor. midification wheel either with new desiccant material or by
simply increasing the present size to increase the perfor-
3.3.4. Exergo-economic factor comparison mance of dehumidification, as the surface area increases as
Fig. 15 shows the different exergoeconomic factors for the exergoeconomic factor is low. With this result, this means
different components of the system. It shows that the exit air that when the exergoeconomic factor is low coupled with a
fan has the highest exergoeconomic factor. This means that low exergy efficiency, the component could be replaced with a
96 i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8

Fig. 11 e Evaporative Cooler (EC) exergo-economic results: (a) Exergy destruction ratio; (b) Exergy destruction cost rate; (c)
Relative cost difference, and; (d) Exergo-economic factor.

higher efficiency one with an expensive component. On the  The cost of exergy loss is high at the regeneration tem-
other hand, when the exergoeconomic factor is high coupled perature of 70  C.
with higher exergy efficiency, the component could be  The exergy destruction ratio of the exit air fan is less than
replaced with a cheaper one with a lower expected perfor- the outdoor air fan.
mance component.  The exergy destruction cost rate is high at the regeneration
temperature of 70  C.

The secondary heat exchanger has the highest exergetic


4. Conclusions efficiency followed by the primary heat exchanger and
desiccant wheel. The total cost rate is high for the regenera-
This study presented the exergoeconomic analyses of the tion temperature of 70  C. The total cost rate (Z_ k C_ D) is higher
developed desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system. It for the desiccant wheel, primary heat exchanger and heating
showed the exergoeconomic performances of individual coil at the regeneration temperature of 70  C. The exit air fan
components of the system and of the whole system. The re- has a higher relative cost difference for the regeneration
sults of the study presented several important conclusions. temperature of 70  C. The exit air fan has the highest exer-
goeconomic factor.
 The major contribution to the increase of the system Based on the main results, the desiccant wheel has the
exergy input is from the heating coil. highest cost rate (Z_ k E_ d). Hence it is important to find a
 The exergy of the supply air decreases as the reference replacement which is cheaper or shows higher efficiency as
temperatures increases, up to 25  C. the exergoeconomic factor is low. In the case of the evapora-
 The cost per exergy of the supply air (State 5) increases as tive cooler and heating coil, it is better to find a high efficiency
the reference temperature increases. equivalent even at higher cost rate as its present efficiency is
 The exergy of the supply air tends to increase from 25  C as low coupled with a low exergoeconomic factor (fk). As relative
the reference temperature increases. cost differences and exergoeconomic factors for air fans
i n t e r n a t i o n a l j o u r n a l o f r e f r i g e r a t i o n 5 6 ( 2 0 1 5 ) 8 1 e9 8 97

Fig. 12 e Desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system Fig. 15 e Desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system


components exergy efficiency at different regeneration components exergo-economic factor at different
temperatures with outdoor air as reference conditions. regeneration temperatures with outdoor air as reference
conditions.

(outdoor air and exit air) are high, it is better to find cheaper air
fans. The installed primary and secondary heat exchangers
are enough and need no replacement.
The study shown the system components exergy efficiency
system exergy destruction, relative cost difference and exer-
goeconomic factor. It shows that some components need
exergy performance improvements through replacement
with high performance equipment, even with the increase of
capital investment. With this, system optimization is the next
step in investigating the different scenarios in terms of
different component performances and costs to optimize the
system components' efficiency and to increase the system
performance based on exergetic and economic factors.
In the optimization process, the components with a high
Fig. 13 e Desiccant-evaporative air-conditioning system
cost rate (Z_ k E_ d) will be given attention and evaluated
components total cost (purchase, operation and
particularly when the relative cost difference (rk) is high. The
maintenance and exergy destruction cost) rate at different
components with a high exergoeconomic factor (fk) will be
regeneration temperatures with outdoor air as reference
evaluated by selecting a cheaper available alternative even
conditions.
with the reduction of component efficiency. Also, the com-
ponents with a low exergoeconomic factor (fk) will be evalu-
ated by selecting an efficient alternative component, but the
cost will be evaluated. In addition, minimization of exergy
destruction of the system components by increasing the
exergy efficiency is important in the selection of different
components to improve the system performance. In general,
the study shows that exergoeconomic analysis is an impor-
tant component in the air-conditioning system evaluation,
and most particularly when different sources of energy are
being utilized.

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