Ted Hickman

Why Your Cooling Towers Might Need Thermal Upgrades



Thermal enhancements are required to improve cold water quality (ensure that the cold water leaving the cooling tower is improved), reduce carry-over losses, improve fill and other worn components, possibly reduce energy consumption, and reduce maintenance costs and equipment downtime. In conclusion, because of the close relationship between cold water temperature and process performance, it is imperative that tower upgrades and repairs are planned and evaluated with a thorough understanding of tower design, manufacturing process, and financial performance. Engineering teams cannot determine the design of a tower without considering water quality factors that can greatly affect tower performance and performance. In addition, a full study of the actual quality of the working water is carried out so that a decision can be made to upgrade to improved nozzles and fillings. After completing your tower analysis, you may need to make some of the decisions listed below.

The choice of fill flow path and fill plate spacing (groove size) must be carefully considered and depends on the expected quality of the water that will flow through the tower. Careful selection of the design and pouring style in consultation with a cooling water specialist is critical for any new project.

As equipment grows and processes change, cooling tower installation encompasses systems that may need to be expanded or replaced. After many years of operation, cooling towers may require more than routine maintenance and component replacement to achieve the thermal performance required to support the production process. Replacing the coolant in the old cooling tower or other on-site repairs will increase the cooling capacity in the short term, but unless structural integrity issues are addressed, the durability or stability of the cooling tower design will not be improved.

While the plant operator can prepare the initial design specifications for the cooling tower, additional steps need to be taken to assess the success of the renovation project. Internal corrosion can often be temporarily repaired with galvanized metal, but many other problems require mechanical tower upgrades to restore full HVAC functionality. With proper maintenance programs and regular maintenance, this power loss can be minimized and the life of cooling towers, pumps, chillers, heat exchangers, and other equipment in the cooling system can be extended. As production or heat capacity increases, the tower is likely to need upgrades to achieve higher performance.

The heat load is also an important parameter to determine the size and cost of the tower. The following will show you how to calculate the air mass flow required to cool the 150,000 GPM water entering the cooling tower to the required temperature, and the evaporation loss of the water. Comprehensive cooling tower analysis involves the use of automatic data recording equipment to collect tower data at the same time, such as wet bulb, hot water, cold water, wind speed, water flow, etc. However, if this is not possible, trends in tower performance can be assessed using public data.

By combining the tower performance curve, process performance curve, economic impact curve and annual weather curve, the economic value of restoring the tower to its original design state can be predicted. Together with the curves generated in the first two stages (existing thermal performance, process impact, and economic impact), it is necessary to incorporate annual weather changes to develop a comparative model to predict the financial impact and return on investment of various refrigeration retrofit projects.

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