Experimental and numerical study on microchannel and round-tube condensers in a R410A residential air-conditioning system

Chang Yong Park, Pega Hrnjak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The effect of different type of condensers on the performance of R410A residential air-conditioning systems was investigated in this study. Two R410A residential air-conditioning systems, one with a microchannel condenser and the other with a round-tube condenser, were examined experimentally, while the other components of the two systems were identical except the condensers. Two condensers had almost same package volumes. The two systems were operated in separate environmental chambers and their performance was measured in ARI A, B, and C conditions. Both the COP and cooling capacity of the system with the microchannel condenser were higher than those for the round-tube condenser in all test conditions. The refrigerant charge amount and the refrigerant pressure drop were measured; the results showed a reduction of charge and pressure drop in the microchannel condenser. A numerical model for the microchannel condenser was developed and its results were compared with the experiments. The model simulated the condenser with consideration given to the non-uniform air distribution at the face of the condenser and refrigerant distribution in the headers. The results showed that the effect of the air and refrigerant distribution was not a significant parameter in predicting the capacity of the microchannel condenser experimentally examined in this study. Temperature contours, generated from the measured air exit temperatures, showed the refrigerant distribution in the microchannel condenser indirectly. The temperature contours developed from the model results showed a relatively good agreement with the contours for measured air exit temperatures of the microchannel condenser.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)822-831
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Refrigeration
Issue number5
StatePublished - Aug 2008


  • Air conditioning
  • Comparison
  • Condenser
  • Cooling system
  • Experiment
  • Finned tube
  • Microchannel
  • Modelling
  • Simulation
  • Smooth tube

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical Engineering


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