Absorber downsizing for the development of compact absorption chillers is a known challenge of this type of refrigerator. Past studies have revealed how a droplet flow regime can increase the interface area and enhance absorption rates, especially during the droplet formation. This study proposes a space-efficient design for an adiabatic absorber based on a bank of solid pins coupled with a droplet flow regime. Manufacturing through 3D printing technique is used to study the effect of different fin shapes during droplet formation. Droplet behavior is firstly studied analytically through a variational approach. Experiments on pure water are then carried out to validate the model and produce design guidelines for a H2O-LiBr absorber. Results show that the analytical model is more accurate in the regions close to the droplet bottom. The rhomboidal geometry with 120° returned the smallest droplet volume without allowing coalescence of more droplets, ensuring the maintenance of droplet flow and a high surface area for mass transfer. Disturbances in the droplet profiles were observed, caused by the pin-droplet interaction. A map has been then created to allow a quick sizing of the absorber and find its main geometrical and operational features.
Heat and Mass Transfer – Springer Journals
Published: May 29, 2018