Effect of air temperature non-uniformity on water-air heat exchanger thermal performance - Toward innovative control approach for energy consumption reduction
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Parametric numerical analysis that explores the relation between the non-uniformity of air temperature distribution upstream of a heat exchanger and its thermal performance is performed. The obtained numerical results are employed toward the optimization of water-air heat exchanger thermal performance. Furthermore, the numerical results lay out the foundation to develop an innovative control approach for monitoring the airflow upstream of a cross-flow water-air heat exchanger that lead to the optimization of its thermal performance and energy consumption. Consequently, an in-house computational code is established to evaluate the aforementioned thermal performance based on known parameters; namely, distribution of upstream velocity and temperature of an air-liquid heat exchanger, the flow rate of heat exchanger liquid, in addition to the inlet liquid temperature. It was observed that non-uniformities in air temperature can, depending on the configuration, increase or decrease the thermal performance of a heat exchanger up to 5%. Additionally, controlling air temperature non-uniformities, the fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emission can be reduced by up to 0.97 kg (1.34 L) and 3.17 kg respectively for a vehicle running three hours per day. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.