Frost, defrost, and refrost and its impact on the air-side thermal-hydraulic performance of louvered-fin, flat-tube heat exchangers

Y. Xia, Y. Zhong, P. S. Hrnjak, A. M. Jacobi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The thermal-hydraulic performance under conditions of an initial frost growth on the air-side surface, and for subsequent 'refrosting' after a defrost period is experimentally studied for folded-louvered-fin, microchannel heat exchangers. In total, five heat exchangers are considered; the thermal performances during one frost-growth cycle for four different fin geometries are compared in terms of overall heat transfer coefficient, pressure drop, and j and f factors; the defrost and refrost characteristics of two heat exchangers are compared to explore geometry effects. Typically, the performance under refrosting conditions becomes periodic and repeatable after the third or fourth refrosting cycle. The allowable frost growth period (before a defrost is required), the defrost requirement, and the thermal-hydraulic performance depend on heat exchanger geometry for the specimens used in this study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1066-1079
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Refrigeration
Volume29
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2006

Keywords

  • Air cooler
  • Defrost
  • Experiment
  • Finned tube
  • Frost formation
  • Heat exchanger
  • Heat transfer
  • Pressure drop

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical Engineering

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