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How Cooling Towers Work

How Cooling Towers Work

A Cooling Tower is a heat exchanger device meant specifically for cooling down machines that rejects heat to the atmosphere where water comes in contact with air through the constant movement of a water stream to a lower temperature. It works as a type of heat exchanger that allows water to release its heat into small volumes of water droplets called vaporization when air comes in its contact. Gradually the temperature of the water drops down that’s being circulated throughout the cooling tower and this is how Cooling Towers Work.

Precisely, a cooling tower converts hot water coming from an industrial equipment into cold water. A Cooling Tower Works in two ways:
1. It may utilize water evaporation to remove the process heat of the apparatus and cool the working fluid to near the wet-bulb air temperature.
2. It can cool down the working fluid with the help of air to near the dry-bulb air temperature.

Where does hot water come from to be cooled?

Cooling chambers actually are meant to treat hot water that comes from air conditioning condensers or other industrial processes. This hot water is pumped by motor through pipes directly into which is gone to the nozzles. Nozzles in the cooling tower spray the hot water onto to the “fill media”, which is a cost effective heat reduction mesh that slows the water flow down and exposes the maximum amount of water surface area to air. Once the water is exposed to air, it cools down. A motor-driven electric fan called Cooling Tower fan pulls the air to cool water quickly.

There is water evaporation process once the air and water are exposed together. This shows an action of cooling. This process is repeated in a cycle to constantly cool down the heated equipment or condensers.

Example of the working of a cooling tower:

Let us assume you have Cooling towers work on top of the office building and it has a centrifugal pump in the basement of the building. The centrifugal pump will cycle water known as “condenser water” between the chiller compartment in the basement and the cooling tower on the roof.

The condenser water has a temperature of around 32°C (89.6°F) when it leaves the condenser of the chiller. The pump sends this water up to the Cooling Tower. Once the water is cooled down from exiting the condenser to the tower, it reenters after heat withdrawal to the chiller condenser with a fall in temperature, around 27°C (80.6°F) so that the recycled yet cooler water again picks up enough heat on it’s next cycle. The colder water is then pumped back to the process/equipment that absorbs heat from the condenser.

As the chiller adds heat to the condenser water, it is driven up by pump to the cooling tower where the nozzles will spray back the water onto film fills. There is a suction fan which will draw air in and expose the hot water to the air. This exposure will separate the heat from the water instantly in the form of vapors and reject it into the atmosphere. The heat generated by the compressor of the chiller is thus disposed of in the atmosphere subsequently raising atmospheric temperature. It also rejects the heat generated by the inner vacuum of the building, people and computer systems.

Cooling towers work according to equipment size and requirement that regularly needs cooled water to rotate within their components and absorb heat from there to keep the machines safe from overheating and functioning properly. They are normally required to transfer the heat from power plants to other process and then to the atmosphere. By extracting heat from hot water coming out of the condenser, the wasted stream of heat is pulled out in a vortex by a suction fan with the idea of pulling out additional energy and filtering the heat to the colder upper troposphere.

Components that help a cooling tower reject heat:

Condenser water: The warm condenser water comes from heat transferred from equipment to condenser and it enters near the top of the cooling tower.

Cooling Tower spray nozzles: This hot water is passed through some nozzles which then spray the water in small droplets on and across film fills which have wide water surface area to reject excess heat.

Cooling Tower fills: These are PVC or durable plastic sheets with hollow windows that make a thin film of water on the surface so that heat evaporates into the air in the form of water vapor and cold water remains on the film.

Suction Fan: For increased cooling, a fan on top of the tower suctions up extra heat from the water falling onto film fills. The fan extracts heat by pulling up air through the filters at the bottom of the unit and move it up and out through the top of the cooling tower. This air passes through the fill packaging and drift eliminators making water cool. The air flows in the opposite direction to the flow of condenser water.

Air flow and condenser water: The spray of water on the thin film emanates heat from it that is further pulled by the blower fan which sucks heat from the water forming water condensation.

Cooling Tower drift eliminator: To reduce operating costs and water wastage, drift eliminators are used. These are located above the fill packaging and spray nozzles but below the fan. They change direction to condense the hot air against the sides and release extra moisture out which then runs back to the fill packaging and is collected in the basin of the cooling tower to be sent back to the chiller.

Cooling Tower Basin: It collects cold water coming down from the fills back to the condenser so cooler water will circulate back to the machinery. Overflown water will be sent to drain. There is an automated valve attached to the basin.

We can easily find a good Cooling Tower Manufacturer in India which has been dealing with “Cooling tower work” for a long period of time. To safeguard your precious equipment, purchase a cooling tower in India and secure your equipment life.

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