All-weather friendly cooling technology works without mechanical compressors or chemical refrigerants, and generates drinking water
A team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has pioneered a new water-based air-conditioning system that cools air to as low as 18 degrees Celsius without the use of energy-intensive compressors and environmentally harmful chemical refrigerants. This game-changing technology could potentially replace the century-old air-cooling principle that is still being used in our modern-day air-conditioners. Suitable for both indoor and outdoor use, the novel system is portable and it can also be customised for all types of weather conditions.
Led by Associate Professor Ernest Chua from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at NUS Faculty of Engineering, the team’s novel air-conditioning system is cost-effective to produce, and it is also more eco-friendly and sustainable. The system consumes about 40 per cent less electricity than current compressor-based air-conditioners used in homes and commercial buildings. This translates into more than 40 per cent reduction in carbon emissions. In addition, it adopts a water-based cooling technology instead of using chemical refrigerants such as chlorofluorocarbon and hydrochlorofluorocarbon for cooling, thus making it safer and more environmentally-friendly.
To add another feather to its eco-friendliness cap, the novel system generates potable drinking water while it cools ambient air.
Assoc Prof Chua said, “For buildings located in the tropics, more than 40 per cent of the building’s energy consumption is attributed to air-conditioning. We expect this rate to increase dramatically, adding an extra punch to global warming. First invented by Willis Carrier in 1902, vapour compression air-conditioning is the most widely used air-conditioning technology today. This approach is very energy-intensive and environmentally harmful. In contrast, our novel membrane and water-based cooling technology is very eco-friendly – it can provide cool and dry air without using a compressor and chemical refrigerants. This is a new starting point for the next generation of air-conditioners, and our technology has immense potential to disrupt how air-conditioning has traditionally been provided.”
Innovative membrane and water-based cooling technology
Current air-conditioning systems require a large amount of energy to remove moisture and to cool the dehumidified air. By developing two systems to perform these two processes separately, the NUS Engineering team can better control each process and hence achieve greater energy efficiency.
The novel air-conditioning system first uses an innovative membrane technology – a paper-like material – to remove moisture from humid outdoor air. The dehumidified air is then cooled via a dew-point cooling system that uses water as the cooling medium instead of harmful chemical refrigerants. Unlike vapour compression air-conditioners, the novel system does not release hot air to the environment. Instead, a cool air stream that is comparatively less humid than environmental humidity is discharged – negating the effect of micro-climate. About 12 to 15 litres of potable drinking water can also be harvested after operating the air-conditioning system for a day.
“Our cooling technology can be easily tailored for all types of weather conditions, from humid climate in the tropics to arid climate in the deserts. While it can be used for indoor living and commercial spaces, it can also be easily scaled up to provide air-conditioning for clusters of buildings in an energy-efficient manner. This novel technology is also highly suitable for confined spaces such as bomb shelters or bunkers, where removing moisture from the air is critical for human comfort, as well as for sustainable operation of delicate equipment in areas such as field hospitals, armoured personnel carriers, and operation decks of navy ships as well as aircrafts,” explained Assoc Prof Chua.
The research team is currently refining the design of the air-conditioning system to further improve its user-friendliness. The NUS researchers are also working to incorporate smart features such as pre-programmed thermal settings based on human occupancy and real-time tracking of its energy efficiency. The team hopes to work with industry partners to commercialise the technology.
The Latest on: Cooling technology
- McKenney's, Inc. Successfully Completes Cooling System Replacement Project in Atlanta, GA on April 17, 2019 at 11:24 pm
McKenney's was commissioned to add a cooling system with redundancy in the data hub of the massive, technology-advanced stadium. The hub features most of the controls for thousands of video boards ... […]
- Powered by HeiQ Smart Temp Technology, BUFF Launches CoolNet UV+ for Activated Cooling on April 17, 2019 at 8:47 am
For 25 years, BUFF® has premiered and innovated the tubular headwear category. Headquartered in Spain, the company was founded to keep the founder’s head and neck warm during his cross-country ... […]
- Facebook to deploy StatePoint cooling in Ireland on April 17, 2019 at 5:11 am
Facebook has said it will use the StatePoint liquid cooling (SPLC) technology, developed by Nortek Air Solutions, in the expansion of its data center in Clonee, Ireland. The deployment in Dublin is ... […]
- Nortek Air Solutions Cooling System to be Used in Facebook Data Center Expansion on April 17, 2019 at 4:38 am
“This new exchanger technology addresses some of the fundamental disadvantages of open spray and wetted media evaporative cooling systems and opens up new possibilities for high performance liquid ... […]
- Forecasting the future of technology, the arts and design at the Imagine RIT Festival on April 17, 2019 at 3:10 am
“There has been an industry standard for heating and cooling, and we’re re-inventing that standard. I predict that creative energy solutions will be part of the next industrial revolution.” The Future ... […]
- Technology has made us trade our privacy for convenience on April 16, 2019 at 9:51 am
By everything, I mean exactly that, from window shades to lighting to cooling to doorbells to audio. I’m particularly fascinated by smart fridges that look up recipes and read them out while you cook. ... […]
- Ultimate Guide To Financing Heating & Cooling on April 16, 2019 at 9:16 am
When purchasing a new heating and cooling system 99.9% of the time the new system will ... consumers with an exceptional lease-purchase experience: (an easy application, technology of their choice, ... […]
- How European Data Centers are Pioneering Green Technology on April 16, 2019 at 5:02 am
Previously, cooling in the summer months had been based on traditional ... colocating in data centers committed to both using green technology and innovating new efficiency measures is a way to ... […]
- Godrej Appliances presents an innovative, future-friendly cooling technology on April 16, 2019 at 3:22 am
16 Apr, 2019 - 03:42 PM IST | By indiantelevision.com Team Award winning digital content studio, Supari Studios, appoints Nisha Vasudevan as Executive Creative Director, boosting the company’s ... […]
- Keeping it cool: How biopharma facilities can use an old technology in a new way on April 14, 2019 at 11:39 pm
When it comes to cooling pharmaceutical facilities and their processes, we don’t necessarily need the most modern refrigeration technology. Ice storage is an old technology. Large ice blocks were used ... […]
via Google News and Bing News