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Title: The prediction and the exploitation of the thermodynamic properties of non ozone depleting refrigerants
Author: Fitzgerald, Colm Domhnall
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1997
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The use of mixtures of refrigerants in refrigeration cycles can lead to improvements in cycle efficiency. The majority of refrigerant working fluids have been pure fluids. With pure refrigerants temperature profiles between the working fluid and the heat source and sink fluids may not be well matched. Mixtures of refrigerants boil and condense across a temperature range. This property can be used to reduce the mean temperature differences in the heat exchangers, and to improve the matching of the temperature profiles. This leads to higher coefficients of performance (COP). In this thesis, the improvement in refrigeration COP due to mixtures of refrigerants is investigated. Ratification of the Montreal protocol led to the phasing our of chlorofluorcarbon (CFC) refrigerants. Hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants are the leading candidates to replace CFCs. Mixtures of HFC refrigerants are examined. An existing pilot plant refrigeration cycle was adapted and modified for use with HFC refrigerants. A binary mixture of difluoromethane (R32) and 1,1,1,2-tetrafluoroethane (R134a) is examined experimentally. The phasing out of CFC refrigerants means that there exists a need for methods which can predict accurately the thermodynamic properties of a proposed replacement refrigerant, from sparse amounts of data. The Cubic Chain-of-Rotators (CCOR) equation of state requires relatively little knowledge of the fluid it describes. CCOR predictions of pure and mixed HFC thermodynamic properties, were compared with published experimental data. Comparisons were also made with the more complex Carnahan-Starling-DeSantis (CSD) equation. The CCOR equation predicted saturated and superheated vapour pressure with satisfactory accuracy. Liquid density was not predicted with the same precision. Vapour density was described no worse than the CSD equation. CCOR description of binary vapour-liquid equilibrium (VLE) was superior to that of the CSD equation. Prediction of VLE data was improved by using optimal interaction constants. It was shown that if an optimal set of interaction constants was located for each experimental data point for bubble point VLE data, the interaction constants exhibited a regular dependence upon temperature and composition. The CCOR equation can be used to provide approximate preliminary thermodynamic data for a new refrigerant, for which little data exists.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available