There’s no doubt that many large industrial applications require a cooling tower to help them reduce the augmented heat in the system. With the ability to reject heat waste to the open air, these systems are the heroes that can save the day when the produced heat in the systems reach high levels. So in this article, I will help you learn more deeply about this giant hero and understand its parts and efficiency as well as other useful details that expand your knowledge. So, what are you waiting for? You are just a blink away from the information! Keep on reading…

Cooling towers are designed with different sizes for diverse applications, whether in HVAC or industrial applications. And they are considered to be one of the most important components in the industry. There are different ways for their categorization, based on size, airflow, cooling flow, heat flow, etc. All these categorization and designs… but how about its efficiency? How to get the most out of them? Does it really worth it?

The cooling tower efficiency

There are several factors such as temperature, approach and range, which should be taken into consideration when trying to figure out cooling tower efficiency. Plus, you need to know a few other related factors to be able to get the most out of your system and make sure it provides the maximum efficiency, including the influence of humidity on the temperature, the maximum amount of heat loss, and the way you can decrease the temperature of the water in this system.

Temperature plays an important role in cooling towers since it uses the evaporation process to decrease the water temperature in a manufacturing plant. By passing the hot water through several fills, the evaporation takes place since the water’s contact with the air increases.

To reduce the water’s temperature resulting in an increase in efficiency, you should consider having ambient temperature as well as humidity and control these factors along with approach and range. These are the main factors when it comes to temperature, capable of enabling the operator to ensure the water temperature drops to the lowest possible level without having to waste a lot of energy.

The other effective factor in the cooling tower efficiency is the Approach.

The wet-bulb temperature in these systems can help you understand the extent to which evaporation and heat transfer can occur and by using this factor, as well as the cold water temperature, you can measure the approach which is the difference between these two. To reach the best efficiency, this number should be as low as possible. Keep in mind that the normal approach number for an efficient cooling tower is somewhere between 5 to 9° F in design numbers and around 75 percent of this number is what your system actually provides.

And last but not least in the important factors is Range. The range is the difference between the incoming and the outgoing water in the towers. Since the hot water enters the system and the cold water exits from it, this difference would be the range. This number should be as high as possible to ensure an efficient system. Here you should deal with two factors that can affect the range: the total heat that can be removed from a water unit, and the amount of water flow. The efficient amount for these two results in the system’s efficiency. There are a lot more you can learn to help you maximize the system’s efficiency. You can access these extra tips and tricks here.

But hey! There’s another trick that can increase this system’s efficiency and that’s…. (Go ahead, make a guess!)… The durability and efficiency of its parts! The parts should be up and running without any problem for your system to provide the most satisfying results. But what are its different parts?



Different cooling tower parts

Some parts of this system have greater roles into the overall performance of the system, including cold water basin, fills, hot water distribution basin, float valve, Air Inlet Louvers, etc. and we’ll go through them briefly in this article.

Cold water basin and hot water distribution basin accumulate the water. The cold water basin accumulates and directs the water to the pump suction line and the hot water distribution basin accumulates hot process water and then distributes the water down the nozzles. The cold water basin prevents bacteria and removes stagnant water. But the corrosion and deterioration of these two basins over time decreases the efficiency of the system even if they are getting the right maintenance, they still need to be repaired and replaced every once in a while.

Fill media is the element that identifies the performance of the cooling tower. They increase the contact surface between the cooling and working media which results in the rise of the transferred heat. The higher the contact, the lower the chance of energy loss.

Float valve with the ability to maintain the water in the tower at the desired level, decreasing the wasted water.

Drift eliminators that can capture the moisture and water droplets to prevent the loss of process water, as well as the air inlet louvers which block the splashing of the water are both among the important units in a cooling tower that can help increase its efficiency while also decreasing its energy loss when maintained right.

There are other parts that help such a system run. This source can provide the most accurate information about different parts to help you expand your knowledge around the subject.

Now that you’ve learned so much about cooling towers, how about a quick glance at the two most popular types, the Cross-Flow and the Counter Flow?

Counter flow cooling tower

In this type, the fill media has been installed horizontally under the hot water distribution basin and with the flow of the air through the fill, the heat will be absorbed when the water flows down the fill. The airflow in the cross flow type is opposite to the process water stream which explains the name of this type. The fan in this type is at the top of the nozzles, pulling the air into the fill media.

This type offers maximum thermal performance which is one of the reasons that made them more popular among other types. This design is also space-efficient die to its horizontal cross-section of the tower. Another advantage of counter flow cooling tower is their low power consumption and minimal maintenance! If the type is interesting for you and want more information on the topic, visit here.

Cross Flow Cooling Tower

This type is among mechanical drift towers. The name comes from the arrangement of the fill in this system that enables the hot process water to flow down the fill media vertically with the gravity force and the air flows horizontally to cool down the falling water.

This type includes a fan on its top to induce airflow into the fills and louvers to get in touch with the hot water drops as one of the steps toward the goal of the system.

There are a lot of advantages when you use a cross-flow cooling tower such as having an access door for inspection as well as easy access to the internal mechanical components. Plus, they can operate at cold climates too which makes them perfect for a wide variety of applications.

There are a lot more to learn about cross-flow type including its parts, application, etc. which can be learned from here.

Care to share your knowledge and experience about cooling towers? Drop a comment and let us hear from you!

Sources:

https://www.linquip.com/blog/increasing-cooling-tower-efficiency-calculation/

https://www.linquip.com/blog/cooling-tower-parts/

https://www.linquip.com/blog/crossflow-cooling-tower/

https://www.linquip.com/blog/counterflow-cooling-tower/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temperature