Hauer and W. Dallmayer ZAE Bayern, Center for Applied Energy Research, Munich, Germany, Tel: 089/356250-17, Fax: 089/356250-23

ABSTRACT Zeolite adsorbs water in an exothermic reaction. Heat of adsorption released in this process can be used for space heating applications. An open gas fired adsorption heat pump based on this effect is able to utilize solar gains in winter as well as latent heat of water vapor produced in the building as low temperature energy source. It can match the heating demand of a low energy building and reduce the number of on/off processes of a gas burner. The thermal coefficient of performance of the system is between 1.05 and 1.63 depending on the availability of the low temperature energy source. In addition the system can be used as a solar desiccant cooling system in the summer with minor changes in construction. 1. Advantages of an Open Adsorption Heat Pump The adsorption heat pump is based on the process of water vapor adsorption on zeolite. The heat pump is operated under ambient pressure in an open loop coupled to the ambiance. During the sorption process an air stream transports water vapor through a packed bed of spherical zeolite pellets. This gas transports also heat in and out of the zeolite bed. Heat delivered by a gas burner drives the heat pump. This system leads to a more effective use of primary energy. The maximum thermal coefficient of performance is about 1.6. The adsorption heat pump can be connected to a standard heating system. Modern gas burners work very efficiently and produce a small output of toxic combustion gases. This does not hold, however, for the first minutes of their operation. An adsorption heat pump reduces the number of on/off processes, because of its integrated storage capacity. Zeolite stores heat efficiently over long term. It improves the performance of the heating system in spring and autumn, when the climatic conditions cause an intermittent heating demand. Well insulated low energy buildings need gas burners with low maximum thermal power of about 5 kW and less (for single family houses). Minimum power of available gas burners is about 10 kW. The power of such a gas burner can be reduced without performance losses by the proposed system.

In addition the components of the system can be used for desiccant cooling. Since solar irradiation and cooling demand are correlated, a solar operation of this system is possible. The adsorption heat pump is economically interesting. All components are inexpensive, available and easy to construct. Only a small amount (about 100 kg) of Zeolite is necessary. The auxiliary energy demand for ventilation is about 5 % of the thermal energy output. 2. The Heat Pump System The heat pump system itself consists of four components: The zeolite bed, the condensing heat exchanger, the humidifier and the gas burner. In order to obtain a realistic insight of the performance of the heat pump the building and the heat recovery device should be also considered. Figure 1 shows the heat pump system schematically.

water air heating system humidifier heat recovery ambience Zeolite storage (solar)



Figure 1: Heat pump system For the calculation of the COP the availability of the low temperature energy source is crucial. In this context it means, the solar installation - solar collectors and hot water storage - is an integral part of the system considered. In the following the building and the components of the heat pump are introduced. Building The adsorption heat pump is designed to match the heating demand of a single-family house. The

In the application discussed here the heat pump contains 110 kg of zeolite 13X. A spray nozzle distributes water over a packed bed of Raschig rings. This length is necessary in order to get maximum temperature change in the air and the condensed water.5 (ca. The cylindrical tube has a diameter of 0. The packed bed of rings has a diameter of 0. 60/59 Table 1: Building and heating system data Zeolite Experiments with 20 kg zeolite 13X showed a heating power of about 1 kW. 140 m³/h) 25 W/m² 16 W/m² 75 kWh/m² a 60 °C/ 40°C 5. All data of the zeolite and the column are taken into account. Air leaves the packed bed almost saturated at about 60 °C. Using this new insulation technique.3 m (like the zeolite column plus the humidifier).4 m and a height of 1 m.5 kW m². 3. They are transported to the heating system via the condensing heat exchanger. The space between the two walls is evacuated and filled with glass fiber boards.4 m and a height of 0. Heating Power 135 m² 0. Gas Burner A standard. Desorption For desorption 20 m³/h of ambient air are blown through the heat recovery heat exchanger. The gas burner brings the preheated air up to a temperature of 1000 °C and a dewpoint of 45 °C.2 m. The vertical position allows the condensed water to transfer heat to the exchanger fluid while running down and finally flowing into the connected tank or directly into the hot water storage of the solar system. Condensed water at . With a temperature of 300 °C zeolite can be completely dried to a residual water content below 1% of its dry weight. Heated Building area Air Exchange rate Maximum Heat Load Transmission Losses Ventilation Losses Averaged Heat Load Heating System Inlet/outlet Temperature Max. The high temperature energy input from the gas burner takes place during desorption. By mixing this air with 150 m³/h of saturated air at 45 °C desorption conditions of 300 °C temperature and of 45 °C dewpoint are reached. The example is calculated by a experimentally validated simulation program for sorption processes in packed beds. This leads to a temperature rise of about 40 K. In this application the gas burner is operated with an air surplus. Maximum temperature of the combustion gases in case of complete combustion (at air rate 10 m³/h) is 1900 °C. Condensing Heat Exchanger For a compact construction the condensing heat exchanger is located at the side of the zeolite column and the humidifier. Maximum heating power is 10 kW. It is a countercurrent flow heat exchanger with a length of 1. Data of the building and the heating system are shown in table 1.maximum heat load is calculated for the meteorological conditions of Munich/Germany (-16 °C for 24 hours). Up to 400 l/h are pumped through the nozzle. The Heat Pump Process There are two modes of operation for an adsorption heat pump: Desorption and adsorption.and adsorption cycle. modern gas burner is used. The packed bed of zeolite pellets is located inside a double walled steel column. the heat losses are reduced by a factor of ten and the parasitic heat capacity is four times smaller compared to conventional insulation. dewpoint -5 °C) The latent and sensible heat of the 170 m³/h air stream can be used. which leads to an exchange surface of the rings of about 20 60°C water air Zeo 40°C condensate 40°C 45/45 150 m³/h 20 m³/h 300/45 1000/45 35/-5 -5/-5 40/40 Figure 2: Desorption mode of the heat pump (35/-5: temperature 35 °C. Humidifier The humidifier is located directly under the zeolite column. A relative humidity of more than 95% can be reached. In the following example an ambient temperature of -5°C and a dewpoint of -5°C are assumed. low temperature energy input during adsorption. Heat can be delivered to the heating system over the whole de. With an air rate of 20 m³/h this leads to a temperature of 1000 °C.

Sensible heat is delivered to the heating system.065 kg/kgair corresponds to the dewpoint of 45 °C during desorption (figure 2 ). Figure 5: Adsorption mode of the heat pump (35/-5: temperature 35 °C. 70°C 138/-40 water air Zeolite 40°C 45/-40 humidifier 20 m³/h 140 m³/h 30/-5 -5/-5 30°C 23°C 23/5 20/7 building 10/-40 Figure 3: Desorption inlet/outlet air temperature Figure 3 and 4 show temperatures (in/out) and water contents (in/out). 20 m³/h of saturated air are blown through the heat recovery device heating up the incoming air. This leads to a incoming water content of 0. when the outlet temperature rises to 160 °C and the water content drops simultaneously to 0. dewpoint -5 °C) Mixing the ventilation outlet with 20 m³/h dry air at 45 °C. 140 m³/h dry air leaves the system after heat recovery at 10 °C.027 kg/kgair (figure 7). Warm water from the solar hot water storage saturates the air at 30 °C. 0. The air leaving the packed bed is dry (dewpoint of -40°C). The energy balance of the building is not influenced by this ventilation process.1 kg/kgair . The dewpoint increment is equivalent to the moisture production within the building. but with a dewpoint of 7 °C. 140 m³/h of preheated air at 30 °C and a dewpoint of -5 °C are blown through the building. Zeolite adsorbs the water vapor in an exothermic reaction. It leaves the building at 20 °C.13 kg/kgair respectively. the air has to be saturated at a temperature between 25 °C and 30°C before entering the . Figure 4: Desorption inlet/outlet water content Adsorption In order to reach a high outlet temperature leaving the zeolite. The process is stopped. Low temperature energy as well as latent heat from the building is used for humidification. a total air stream of 160 m³/h enters the humidifier. The incoming water content of 0. while 150 m³/h are mixing down the combustion gases to 300 °C again. The desorption process is schematically shown in figure 2. After a few minutes out let temperature and water content rise to 57 °C. The adsorption process is schematically shown in figure 5.about 40 °C leaves the desorption process and can be stored in the hot water tank.5 hours. The desorption takes about 2. packed bed. This heats the air up to 138 °C.

Enthalpy of air leaving the system Qair des Energy input to heat up and desorb zeolite Heating energy Zeo Figure 6: : Adsorption inlet/outlet air temperature Figure 6 and 7 show temperatures (in/out) and water contents (in/out).the ambiance Qair ads and Q air des and energy of condensed water Qcond leaving the system) plus low temperature energy for humidification (Qlt ).Since Qcond can be stored (see „Desorption“) it can substitute part of the low temperature energy demand. Thermal COP of the Heat Pump System The COP is defined as the fraction of energy output.25 hours. If the adsorption starts immediately after the desorption this heat can be regained (Qcap). Therefore high temperatures (up to 300 °C) for the first hour due to the thermal capacity of the desorbed zeolite are observed. Gas burner Qcap Qdes Qcond Qheat des Energy of condensed water Figure 8: Desorption heat fluxes Enthalpy of air leaving the system Qair ads Energy for humidification Gas burner Heating energy Zeo Qlt Qheat ads Qcap Figure 9: Adsorption heat fluxes For the desorption the zeolite has to be heated up to 300°C. Because of that it appears in the numerator and the denominator Figure 7: Adsorption inlet/outlet water content COP = 4. to energy input during desorption (Qdes) plus not usable output (enthalpy of air blown into Qheat ads + Qheat des + Qcap Qdes + Qair ads + Qair des + Qcond + Qlt + Qcap . when the air temperature drops below 75 °C.and adsorption (Qheat ads and Qheat des). In this phase the adsorption front is moving through the packed bed. The adsorption process itself starts after about 45 minutes and lasts for 5. The adsorption shown here starts immediately after desorption. Out let temperature is constant during the adsorption process at about 140 °C. Figures 8 and 9 show schematically energy fluxes of deand adsorption. which is the heating energy during de. This leads to: . Energy from solar collectors and the building is (as low temperature energy source) not taken into account. Adsorption stops.

This one has to cool the ventilation outlet air from the building by humidification. If low temperature energy is supplied by a solar system. dewpoint -5 °C) In the cooling process air from the ambiance is taken at 30 °C and a dewpoint of 16 °C.80 °C. Earlier calculations [2] based on monthly averaged values for solar gains result in a averaged annual COP of about 1.64 kWh for a complete de.48 ± 0. If there is no low temperature energy at all (that means it has to be delivered by the gas burner). it is not always available (in the heating period). there are two differences to the experiments: Water vapor from the building can be used for humidification and water vapor from the gas combustion increases the usable latent heat during desorption. Because of these two effects. An electric air heater supplied desorption and low temperature energy to the heat pump. but simultane- . a higher COP is to be expected.COP = Qheat ads + Qheat des + Qcap Qdes + Qair ads + Qair des + (Qlt − Qcond ) + Qcap An experimental set-up with 20 kg zeolite 13X was built [1]. The humidifier can cool it to temperatures suitable for air conditioning systems.and adsorption cycle (assuming a 50% efficiency for the fan). Solar desorption takes place at temperatures of 70 . Energy demand for the gas burner fan and water pump for the humidifier are about 2%.03.63 can be reached. Looking at the gas driven adsorption heat pump in connection with the building. It is dried by adsorption in the zeolite bed to a dewpoint of 5 °C.0 because of the transformation of latent heat from the building and the gas combustion into usable heat for the heating system. Figure 9 shows the solar desorption. It is above 1. Cooling is only possible in the adsorption mode. Using these temperatures only about 35% of the water in the zeolite can be desorbed. Figure 9: Desorption mode of cooling operation (35/-5: temperature 35 °C. The desorbed zeolite is able to dry an air stream very effectively by adsorption. Collector area was 10 m² of evacuated flat plate collectors.05 is obtained.5 for the meteorological conditions of Munich. 5. Figure 8 shows how the COP depends on this availability. This is about 3% of the usable heating energy output per cycle. The calculation was based on a solar installation designed for domestic hot water production in the summer.and adsorption cycle was 1. Auxiliary energy for ventilation is 1. water air Zeo 70-80°C 160 m³/h Figure 8: Dependence COP/low temperature energy The actual COP of the entire system depends on the solar gains over the heating period. In this experiment the entire low temperature energy demand was supplied electrically. Solar energy out of the hot water storage is brought into the system by the condensing heat exchanger. The driving energy has to be delivered by the solar surplus in periods of high irradiation. Adsorption heat pump as Desiccant Cooling System In a desiccant cooling system dry air is cooled down by humidification. The thermal COP for the experimental de. a COP of 1. If low temperature energy is fully available a COP of 1. For the cooling operation during adsorption a change in the construction and an additional component are necessary: The humidifier has to be switched to another position just under the condensing heat exchanger (see figure 10) and a very simple supplementary humidifier (Hum 2) has to be installed.

Budapest. Air leaves the condensing heat exchanger still with a dewpoint of 5 °C. 1993. Schloffer. Simultaneously a 5. 1993. Schloffer. S. Jan. 53706. F. which including domestic hot water production as well as heating or cooling. Schölkopf. water air 57/5 tion program for buildings energy demand and solar gains TRNSYS [3] will be coupled with the experimentally validated simulation program for packed bed sorption processes FBS. A Transient System Simulation Program. Version 14. Master´s thesis.Madison. References [1] F. Despite the low COP value this kind of operation is interesting because there are no extra costs apart from the extra humidifier and the auxiliary energy for ventilation. if half of the air (80 m³/h) is blown through the system. Outlook At this point of research it is important to investigate the entire energy system of the building. which includes an air/water heat exchanger (see figure 10). The air is cooled in the condensing heat exchanger to 30 °C. With this new tool realistic COP values will be calculated for various configurations.5 hours. A. Dynamisches Sorptionsverhalten von Wasserdampf an Zeolith . Gas Fired Adsorption Heat Pump in Connection with Solar Collectors for Space Heating. University of Wisconsin . Proceedings of the ISES Solar World Congress 1993. USA 40°C Hum 2 25°C Building 30-28/16 30/5 Zeo Hum 22/1 2 30/1 6 [2] Figure 10: Adsorption mode of cooling operation (35/-5: temperature 35 °C. Desorption lasts for 4. We expect that simulation and experiments together will lead to an optimized operation of the heat pump as part of a buildings energy system. The dynamic simula- . Hauer. München. WI. [3] 6. Adsorption takes 8 hours. Desorption should take place at night using energy from the hot water storage of the solar system.1. 1994.ously heated up to 57 °C by the heat of adsorption. LudwigMaximilians-Universität. W. Solar Energy Lab.2. These air conditions are in the comfort range and the air can be blown directly into the buildings ventilation system.5 kW pilot system will be built for additional experimental studies. Holst. including the solar collectors and hot water storage. 160 m³/h hot air are blown through the zeolite. The COP of the cooling process is about 0.Anwendung des Systems als Wärmepumpe zur Raumheizung. dewpoint -5 °C) By controlled humidification the air can now be cooled to 22 °C with a dewpoint of 12 °C. Fakultät für Physik. Technical problems like the minimization of heat losses by compact construction and the easy switching from heating to cooling operation will be solved . Cold water for this cooling is supplied by the humidification of the ventilation outlet air in the extra humidifier.

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