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A Brief Knowledge on Types of Chillers

A chiller is a refrigeration device used to cool water. This methodology is used to cool the surrounding, when the weather is not too favourable. There are units that can operate only for cooling whereas others that can work as thermal pumps. The second category can be of various types like the bidirectional one or the double acting chillers.

  • Types of chillers

  • Depending upon the cooling and the connection characteristics, there are various types of chillers.
• Outdoor air-cooled chillers.
• Indoor air-cooled chillers.
• Air-cooled chillers with detachable condensers.
• Water cooled chillers which are connected to water-cooling towers or natural running water reservoirs.

These types usually vary based on the type of compressor they possess or the various configurations used.

The main two types of chillers used are the water cooled chillers and the air cooled chillers. In terms of the components they are made up of, the two kinds are very much similar. Both the products have an evaporator, compressor, condenser and an expansion valve. But, as their names suggest, water-cooled and air cooled chillers differ in their way of refrigerating fluids. The air cooled chiller let the heat out into the air whereas the water cooled ones let it out into another water source, namely the cooling tower plant. This is the basic difference which allows the companies to choose from these two types, depending on the use they have.

Air cooled chillers

Air chillers are large in size and require a huge space for them to be installed. They are unfavorable for those industries, which have walls higher than the unit itself. They also require continuous flow of fresh air. In case there is an obstructed air flow, there might arise problems with the recirculation. Also the constant problem of noise in case of air coolers is quite diminished as there are fans installed in them which produce sounds of different range. Air chillers are also cheaper and require less maintenance. They also do not require cooling towers, a mechanical room to function and the condenser pumps. On the other hand, air cooled chillers have less shelf lives.

Water cooled chillers

A water cooled chiller is small but needs cooling towers and a mechanical room for proper functioning. Water chillers are also more suitable for industries, especially when there is a shortage of space and also the flow of air is restricted. The water cooled ones fail the expectations when it comes to investing in a cooler producing less noise. Maintenance cost of the water coolers are also on the higher side but when it comes to their life span and efficienecy, water chillers always excel than the air cooled ones.

Construction and uses

Chillers find a great use in the laboratories. They are used to remove heat from a substance and pass it to either water or air. The main components of a chiller are the compressor, the temperature controller, the reservoir and the recirculating pump. The working principle of the chillers is quite simple. The reservoir has a fluid, either air or water, which is recirculated. The reservoir is connected to the equipment which needs to be cooled. The controller regulates the working of the chiller. The most common uses of chillers are:

• The chillers are used to cool the hot plastic in the plastic industry.
• In the printing industry also, the chillers are used to cool down the heat which is generated by the printing rollers. They also help in cooling the paper when it comes out of the ink drying ovens.
• The sophisticated chillers are used in high powered electronics inside MRI and PET machines.
• Chillers are also capable of cooling down the lasers and the source used to supply power to them.