Experimental results for a hydraulic refrigeration system using N-butane as the refrigerant

David S. Chau, Kent L. Whitfield, Warren Rice, Patrick Phelan, Byard D. Wood

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The Hydraulic Refrigeration System (HRS) is a vaporcompression system that accomplishes the compression and condensation of the refrigerant in a unique manner, by entraining refrigerant vapor in a down-flowing stream of water and utilizing the pressure head of the water to compress and condense the refrigerant. A multi-stage HRS was designed, fabricated, and tested using n-butane as the refrigerant. In general, both the refrigeration rate and the Coefficient of Performance (COP) decreased with a corresponding increase in the compression fluid temperature of the third and final stage. The refrigeration rate and COP were found to increase with a corresponding increase in evaporator temperature. The predictions of an enhanced model incorporating two-phase hydraulic losses show excellent agreement with the experimental data. The HRS offers an attractive alternative to conventional vapor-compression systems, especially in applications where direct-contact heat exchange in the evaporator is desirable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers, Heat Transfer Division, (Publication) HTD
Number of pages7
StatePublished - 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes
  • Mechanical Engineering


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