Performance of a Three-Phase, Spray-Column, Direct-Contact Heat Exchanger

[+] Author and Article Information
T. Çoban, R. Boehm

Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT 84112

J. Heat Transfer 111(1), 166-172 (Feb 01, 1989) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3250639 History: Received July 28, 1986; Online October 20, 2009


A numerical model of a three-phase, direct-contact, spray-column heat exchanger has been developed. This model has been used to calculate performance information about this type of device and to compare, where possible, to experiments. General equations are defined for distance up the column using a physically based model for the local heat transfer. This model has been used to investigate a number of characteristics of these devices, such as temperature and holdup distributions through the column. A new formulation is given for a mixed, time-averaged temperature that may be representative of measurements taken with temperature transducers in direct-contact heat exchangers. Little has been given in the literature about quantitative variations of performance as a function of the key independent variables, and information on these aspects is presented here. Although the results presented are for a specific geometry (0.61 m diameter, 3 m active column height, evaporating pentane in 85°C water), the variations shown can give insights generally into the factors affecting performance in these devices. In virtually all cases examined here, extremely good comparisons are shown between predictions and measurements. Conclusions are drawn about the applicability of the model and the important effects demonstrated.

Copyright © 1989 by ASME
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