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May 04, 2015

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pollution

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pollution

© All Rights Reserved

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P M V Subbarao

Professor

Mechanical Engineering Department

I I T Delhi

The art of evaporative cooling is quite ancient, although it

is only relatively recently that it has been studied

scientifically.

Merkel developed the theory for the thermal evaluation of

cooling towers in 1925.

This work was largely neglected until 1941 when the paper

was translated into English.

Since then, the model has been widely applied.

The Merkel theory relies on several critical assumptions to

reduce the solution to a simple hand calculation.

Because of these assumptions, the Merkel method does

not accurately represent the physics of heat and mass

transfer process in the cooling tower fill.

A number of parameters describe the performance of a

cooling tower.

Range is the temperature difference between the hot water

entering the cooling tower and the cold water leaving.

The range is virtually identical with the condenser rise.

Note that the range is not determined by performance of

the tower, but is determined by the heat loading.

water leaving the tower and the wet bulb temperature of the

entering air.

The approach is affected by the cooling tower capability.

For a given heat loading, water flow rate, and entering air

conditions, a larger tower will produce a smaller approach;

i.e., the water leaving the tower will be colder.

Water/Air Ratio (mw/ma) is the mass ratio of water (Liquid)

flowing through the tower to the air (Gas) flow.

Each tower will have a design water/air ratio.

An increase in this ratio will result in an increase of the

approach, that is, warmer water will be leaving the tower.

A test ratio is calculated when the cooling tower performance

is evaluated.

Humidity Ratio:

mv

Mass Flow of Dry Air

ma

m a RuT

paV m a RaT

Ma

m v RuT

pvV m v RvT

Mv

M v pvV

M v pv

pv

RuT

0.622

M a paV M a pa

pa

RuT

Heat is transferred from water drops to the surrounding air by the transfer of sensible and latent heat

Conservation of Mass for dry air:

air ,in m

water ,out air ,out m

air ,out

m

First Law Analysis:

m air C p ,air eC p , steam Tair ,e C p ,air i C p , steam Tair ,i e i h fg

m air C p ,air eC p , steam Tair ,e e h fg C p ,air i C p , steam Tair ,i i h fg

m air C p ,air e C p , steamTair ,e h fg C p ,air i C p , steamTair ,i h fg

dmw

mw

dz

dz

dT

Tw w dz

dz

ma 1

dz

dz

dh

ha a dz

dz

mw

ma 1

Tw

ha

dmw

mw

dz

dz

dT

Tw w dz

dz

ma 1

dz

dz

dh

ha a dz

dz

~

h Tw Ta dA

mw

ma 1

Tw

ha

Heat transfer in cooling towers occurs by two major

mechanisms:

Sensible heat from water to air (convection) and

transfer of latent heat by the evaporation of water (diffusion).

Both of these mechanisms operate at air-water boundary

layer.

The total heat transfer is the sum of these two boundary layer

mechanisms.

The total heat transfer can also be expressed in terms of the

change in enthalpy of each bulk phase.

A fundamental equation o f heat transfer in cooling towers

(the Merkel equation) is obtained.

The Merkel method, developed in the 1920s, relies on

several critical assumptions to reduce the solution to a

simple manual iteration.

These assumptions are:

The resistance for heat transfer in the water film is

negligible,

The effect of water loss by evaporation on energy balance

or air process state is neglected,

The specific heat of air-stream mixture at constant pressure

is same as that of the dry air, and

The ratio of hconv/hdiff (Lewis factor) for humid air is unity.

Merkel combined equations for heat and water vapor

transfer into a single equation similar as

T1

kAV

dT

MeM

m w T2 hsa ha

where:

kAV/mw = tower characteristic

k= mass transfer coefficient

A = contact area/tower volume

V = active cooling volume/plan area

mw = water flow rate

T1 = hot water temperature

T2 = cold water temperature

T = bulk water temperature

Tower Characteristics

Tower Characteristic (MeM or NTU) is a characteristic of

the tower that relates tower design and operating

characteristics to the amount of heat that can be

transferred.

For a given set of operating conditions, the design

constants that depend on the tower fill.

For a tower that is to be evaluated using the characteristic

curve method, the manufacturer will provide a tower

characteristic curve.

m w

NTU C

m a

MeM

The supply tower characteristic of the cooling tower can

be evaluated with the help of cooling tower fill

characteristics curves provided by manufacturer which

takes into account the effect of rain and spray zones as

well as fill fouling.

These curves are certified by the cooling tower institute.

A generalized equation for cooling tower supply can be developed from the

manufacturer curves (known as the supply equation) and is of the form:

m w

KAV

n

C uair

L

m a

Manufacturer pressure drop curves are available

for pressure drops at the inlet louvers, drift

eliminators and the fill packing.

These curves are shown in the following slides.

Using curve fitting software, generalized pressure

drop equations are found developed so as to

calculate the pressure drops.

FILL

The total pressure drop (PD) across the cooling

tower which is the summation of the pressure drops

across the drift eliminators, inlet louvers and the fill

packing (constituting the static pressure drop) and

also the velocity pressure drop is calculated.

Now, the total fan power required is calculated as

where n is the efficiency of the fan.

ANOTHER METHOD

We can also map the demand curve foe

varying KAV/L values with varying L/G on

the manufacturers curves for tower

characteristics in order to find the L/G ratio

of the cooling tower.

After obtaining the L/G ratio all the steps to

be followed are same as the previous

method.

Loss of Water

Evaporation Rate is the fraction of the circulating water

that is evaporated in the cooling process.

A typical design evaporation rate is about 1% for every

12.5C range at typical design conditions.

It will vary with the season, since in colder weather there

is more sensible heat transfer from the water to the air, and

therefore less evaporation.

The evaporation rate has a direct impact on the cooling

tower makeup water requirements.

Drift is water that is carried away from the tower in the form

of droplets with the air discharged from the tower.

Most towers are equipped with drift eliminators to minimize

the amount of drift to a small fraction of a percent of the water

circulation rate.

Drift has a direct impact on the cooling tower makeup water

requirements.

Recirculation is warm, moist air discharged from the tower

that mixes with the incoming air and re-enters the tower.

This increases the wet bulb temperature of the entering air and

reduces the cooling capability of the tower.

During cold weather operation, recirculation may also lead to

icing of the air intake areas.

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