Absorption Cycle and Engine Driven Heat Pumps

While almost all of the heat pumps currently in commercial operation use electric motor-driven vapor compression systems, the compressor itself is indifferent

Fig. 36-24 Geothermal Heat Pump Loop System. Source: The Trane Company

NH3-H2O based GAX cycle, which are discussed in Chapter 38. While the basic GAX cycle is an excellent heat producer, it is not as thermally efficient in the cooling mode as other cooling system alternatives. The advanced GAX-cycle machines, however, are expected to improve the cooling-side efficiency. Under standard ARI conditions, this unit is expected to achieve a cooling COP of 0.95 and a heating COP of 1.55. These COP figures are particularly impressive because these are air source heat pumps operating through a much wider temperature range than can be achieved with conventional absorption cycle machines.

to its driver and may be driven with any type of prime mover. Figure 36-25 shows a series of small-capacity gas-fired reciprocating engine-driven heat pumps applied in a manufacturing plant. In contrast to traditional electric-driven heat pump systems, these units can use heat recovered from the engine to meet peak heating requirements instead of relying upon inefficient electric resistance heat. Figure 36-26 is a schematic diagram of an engine-driven heat pump. Included is a heat exchanger to provide for domestic hot water heating and a gas-fired auxiliary heater.

The absorption cycle may also be used for heat pump applications. Currently, there are numerous types of absorption cycle heat pump systems under prototype development. Many of these are based on variations of the conventional LiBr-based absorption cycle or the

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Guide to Alternative Fuels

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