Compact plate heat exchanger design is helping customers to adopt low-charge ammonia HVAC&R solutions, according to Vahterus.
Jonathan Pascoe, president, Vahterus Americas.
Growing interest in HVAC&R systems using ammonia at low charges is contributing to increased demand for plate and shell heat exchangers (PSHE), Jonathan Pascoe, president, Vahterus Americas, told ammonia21.com in an exclusive interview.
This “big market trend” towards natural refrigerants led Vahterus to develop the ‘Vahterus Combined’, said Pascoe, speaking at the Chillventa 2018 tradeshow, held in Nuremberg on 16-18 October.
The Vahterus PSHE Combined is a heat exchanger where the droplet separation system is integrated with a flooded evaporator, making it “particularly efficient and compact”. “The product has been developed to reduce the dimensions of a traditional evaporator and separator system. Furthermore, it is designed to minimise the refrigerant charge,” says the company on its website.
What makes Vahterus’ compact, plate-type heat exchangers so fitting for refrigeration applications is that they are fully welded – everything is contained and sealed, according to Pascoe.
“The high efficiency of a plate heat exchanger produces a very compact solution, and the great thing there is that it leads us into a low-charge solution,” said Pascoe, adding: “It has become an enabling technology for contractors and end users.”
“The high efficiency of a plate heat exchanger produces a very compact solution. […] It has become an enabling technology for contractors and end users.”
– Jonathan Pascoe, president, Vahterus Americas
End user demand driving growth
Vahterus Combined has played a critically important role in the proliferation of low-charge ammonia applications where the customer is seeking to drive down the plant’s refrigerant charge, according to Pascoe.
“We see a lot of this in ice rinks in Canada, and end users like Pepsi, Kraft and General Mills in the USA – using this Combined product to move with the industry in terms of using natural refrigerants, but minimising the ammonia charge,” Pascoe said.
Heat exchangers are used in almost every refrigeration application, from chillers and condensers to desuperheaters, sub-coolers, oil coolers and economisers.