HEAT EXCHANGERS COMPARISON

Heat exchanger type Maximum pressure Temperature range Fluid limitation Normal size ranges for individual unit

Special features

Air-cooled

High on process side (500 bar).

High temperature possible on process side (up to 600°C). 25 to 600°C (lower and higher with special materials).

5 to 350 m2
Subject only to material of construction. (bare tube) (per bundle multiple bundles often used). 10 to 1000 m2 (per shell multiple shells can be used). Heat rejection system. Requires fans. Tubes normally finned.

Shell-and-tube

300 bar (shell). 1400 bar (tube).

Subject only to materials of construction.

Very adaptable and can be used for nearly all applications.

Brazed-plate

16 bar

Up to 200°C.

Suitable for liquids compatible with braze material.

1 to 10 m2 .

Modular construction.not easily cleaned.

Double-pipe (plain and finned tubes)

300 bar (shell) (higher pressures possible with special design). 1400 bar (tube).

100 to 600°C (higher with special materials).

Subject only to materials of construction.

0.25 to 200 m2 per unit multiple units are often used.

High thermal efficiency, standard modular construction.

Electric tubular heat exchangers

300 bar

Up to 700°C.

Subject only to materials of construction. Low pressure, suitable for corrosive fluids. Corrosion resistant unless fluid attacks resin. Subject only to materials of construction. Often used for fouling duties.

3 to 650 kW. Multiple units used for larger capacity.

Special control systems can be used to minimise impact on electrical supply.

Glass-tube

c. 1 bar

Up to 250°C.

Stainless steel often used in structure.

Graphite

20 bar

50°C to 165°C.

0.2 to 60 m2.

High corrosion resistance.

Spiral

18 bar

Up to 400°C

Up to 200 m2.

High heat transfer efficiency. Cylindrical geometry useful as integral part of distillation tower.

Heat exchanger type

Maximum pressure

Temperature range <200°C (higher with special heat pipe fluids).

Fluid limitation

Normal size ranges for individual unit

Special features

Heat-pipe

Near atmospheric.

Low pressure gases.

100 to 1000 m2.

Near counter-flow operation possible. Extended surface possible on both sides.

Plastic tube

1 bar

Up to 100°C.

Low pressure, suitable for corrosive fluids. Normally unsuitable for gases. Limitation is on gaskets.

Stainless steel often used in structure.

Plate-and-frame

25 bar with some models up to 40 bar.

25 to 175°C ( 40 to 200°C possible for very special types) 273 to + 150°C (aluminium) (up to 600°C in stainless steel), 800°C (with stainless steel materiallimited).

1 to 2500 m2

Modular construction. Normally the most economical if applicable.

Plate-fin

100 bar (aluminium). 200 bar (stainless steel),

Low fouling.

<9 m volume

Very small AT possible. Incorporation of multiple streams. Very large surface area per unit volume.

Printed-circuit

1000 bar

Low fouling.

to 1000 m2

Very large surface area per unit volume. Stainless steel or higher alloys normal construction material. Inter-stream leakage must be tolerated

Rotary regenerators

Near atmospheric,

Up to 980°C.

Low pressured gases. Liquids subject only to materials of construction. Subject only to materials of construction. Not suitable for fouling duties. 5 to 10 m height, 0.5 m dia.

Scraped- surface

10 bar.

Up to 300°C.

Suitable for viscous and crystallisation systems

Welded-plate

60 bar (higher in shells).

In excess of 65 0°C.

> 1000 m2

Differential pressure should be less than 30 bar. Differential expansion should be borne in mind.