A heat exchanger is a mechanism used for transferring heat between two or more liquids. A heat exchanger is used for both heating and cooling. The liquids can be separated by a solid wall to avoid forming mixtures, or they can be directly in contact. Read More…
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Enerquip is your trusted shell and tube heat exchanger partner. Our in-house, thermal design engineers and ASME welders and fabricators can design and build custom engineered solutions for your company’s specific needs. Our experience and expertise have earned us a preferred supplier status with leading companies in the pharmaceutical, food and beverage, cannabis, personal care, chemical,...
Mason Manufacturing is a custom fabricator of shell and tube heat exchangers, ASME pressure vessels, columns, and tanks. Located in Decatur, Illinois, Mason has over 60 years of experience providing customers with custom fabricated vessels that conform to customer specifications, applicable codes, accepted industry standards and that are consistently shipped on time with competitive pricing....
Delta T Heat Exchangers include shell and tube heat exchangers, plate heat exchangers, finned tube heat exchangers, electric heaters and more. Our goal is to assist our customers by providing the most effective and optimized solutions for their heat transfer requirements. We work with specific manufacturers who are leaders in the design and fabrication of heat transfer equipment to ensure that...
Xylem provides cutting-edge heat exchanger products tailored to meet the unique demands of residential, industrial, and commercial applications. Their product line includes air-cooled heat exchangers, gasketed plate heat exchangers, brazed plate heat exchangers, plate & frame heat exchangers, and more. Contact Xylem today to learn more.
Exact Exchanger is a specialized manufacturer of a complete line of high-quality heat exchangers, including air cooled heat exchangers, featuring the Nelson SPIRO-FIN; Turbulator for more efficient heat transfer. All of our exchangers are pneumatically tested. Call Exact Exchanger today for more information about our outstanding products and services.
TITAN Metal Fabricators are the industry experts for corrosion resistant heating and cooling in metal finishing applications. We have standard and custom engineered products to suite our customer's specific application. The metal finishing industry has traditionally used immersion style heater to heat its plating baths.
A heat exchanger is a mechanism used for transferring heat between two or more liquids. A heat exchanger is used for both heating and cooling. The liquids can be separated by a solid wall to avoid forming mixtures, or they can be directly in contact. They are widely used in refrigeration, space heating, air conditioning, chemical plants, petrochemical plants, power stations, petroleum refineries, sewage treatment, and natural gas processing.
The classic instance of heat exchangers is found in internal combustion engines, in which a circulating liquid called engine coolant flows inside radiator coiling and external air flows outside the coiling, thereby cooling the coolant and heating the incoming external air.
Another instance is heat sinks, which are passive heat exchangers that transfer the heat generated by electronics or mechanical devices to fluid mediums, often liquid or air coolants.
Heat Exchanger Selection Considerations
Selecting an appropriate heat exchanger for a specific application requires careful consideration of several key factors to ensure optimal heat transfer and overall system efficiency. The first step is to thoroughly understand the requirements of the application, including the type and amount of fluids involved, the desired temperature range, flow rates, and pressure conditions. Next, one must consider the available space and installation constraints to determine the size and configuration of the heat exchanger.
The choice between different types of heat exchangers, such as shell-and-tube, plate, finned-tube, or double-pipe, depends on the application’s specific needs. For instance, a shell-and-tube heat exchanger might be suitable for high-pressure and high-temperature applications, while a plate heat exchanger could be more space-efficient and cost-effective for low-viscosity fluids.
Material selection is critical, as it directly impacts the heat exchanger’s compatibility with the fluids and their respective corrosiveness and fouling tendencies. Furthermore, considering the overall energy efficiency of the system is crucial, as it will impact operating costs over the long term. Assessing the heat exchanger’s pressure drop, heat transfer coefficient, and fouling resistance is vital to ensure optimal performance and minimal maintenance requirements.
Evaluating the operating conditions, environmental factors, and potential future scalability of the system is also essential to select a heat exchanger that can handle the expected changes or expansions in the future. Lastly, consulting with heat exchanger manufacturers or experts can provide valuable insights and help in making an informed decision.
In summary, the appropriate heat exchanger for a specific application is chosen by thoroughly understanding the system requirements, considering available space and installation constraints, evaluating different heat exchanger types and materials, assessing energy efficiency and long-term costs, and accounting for operating conditions and potential future scalability. Taking a holistic approach and seeking expert advice can lead to the selection of an optimized heat exchanger that meets the application’s needs effectively.
Types of Heat Exchangers
The different types of heat exchangers include:
Finned Tube Heat Exchangers or Air Cooled Heat Exchangers
Finned tube heat exchangers, air cooled heat exchangers, dryers, or coolers work by flowing a fluid into an array of tubes while pumping air or gas over or around the pipes to cool the fluid down.
Sometimes finned tube heat exchangers, dryers, or coolers are hemmed in ductwork, and other times they are fully uncovered with air flowing above them. The efficiency of these devices is derived from their drawn-out surface – the fins protrude into the gas/air flow and increase the heat transfer capability of the structure. They are suitable for gas or air to fluid.
Shell and Tube Heat Exchangers
A shell and tube heat exchanger works by passing a cold or hot gas or fluid through an array of tubing (called a tube bundle) covered in a large metal shell. The counter-flowing cold or hot gas or fluid is pumped into the shell. This is where the heat transfer happens. They are suitable for fluid to gas or fluid to fluid.
Plate Heat Exchangers or Gasket Plate Heat Exchangers
A plate heat exchanger or gasket plate heat exchanger works by passing liquids through an array of plates that are compressed together side by side. They’re suitable for fluid to vapor or fluid to fluid.
Plate and Shell Heat Exchangers
It combines the plate heat exchanger with the shell and tube heat exchanger mechanism. The core of the heat exchanger comprises a wholly welded circular plate package made by compacting and cutting rounded plates, then welding them together. Nozzles carry the flow out and inside of the plate pack.
The wholly welded plate pack is made into an outer shell, which creates a second flow path. The plate and shell mechanism offers high heat transfers, high pressure, high operating temperatures, dense size, reduced fouling, and close-approach temperatures.
Adiabatic Wheel Heat Exchangers
These utilize an intermediate solid store or fluid to hold heat, which is then transferred to the heat exchanger’s other side to be released. Two examples consist of a big wheel with fine threading spinning through the cold and hot fluid and fluid heat exchangers.
Plate Fin Heat Exchangers
They use “sandwiched” channels with fins to improve the efficiency of the unit. The designs include counter-flow and crossflow coupled with different fin configurations like offset fins, wavy fins, and straight fins. They are usually made from aluminum alloys, which offer high heat transfer competence.
Dynamic Scraped Surface Heat Exchanger
This is mainly utilized for cooling or heating with high viscosity yields, crystallization operations, evaporation, and high fouling applications. Long operating times are attained due to continuous scraping of surfaces.
Direct Contact Heat Exchanger
These involve heat transfer between cold and hot flows of two phases without a separating wall. Such heat exchangers may be categorized as gas–liquid, immiscible fluid–fluid, solid–fluid, or solid–gas.
Microchannel Heat Exchangers
It is a multi-pass parallel flow heat exchanger with three major elements: manifolds (outlet and inlet), multiport tubes, and fins.
Pillow Plate Heat Exchangers
Pillow plate heat exchangers are commonly utilized in the dairy industry for milk cooling in large direct-expansion stainless steel tanks. Nearly the whole surface area of a bulk tank may be integrated using this heat exchanger.
Limitations and Overcoming Them
Heat exchangers, despite their numerous benefits, do have some limitations that can impact their performance and suitability for certain applications. One significant limitation is fouling, which occurs when deposits accumulate on the heat exchanger surfaces over time. Fouling reduces heat transfer efficiency and increases energy consumption. Corrosion is another challenge, particularly when dealing with aggressive fluids, as it can lead to material degradation and shorter heat exchanger lifespan. Pressure drop is yet another limitation, especially in high-flow-rate applications, as it can require higher pumping power, leading to increased operational costs. Additionally, the selection of the wrong type or size of heat exchanger can result in inadequate heat transfer and reduced overall system efficiency. Another limitation arises when dealing with fluids that tend to form solidification or freezing during the heat exchange process, which can lead to operational issues or even damage to the heat exchanger.
To overcome these limitations, heat exchanger manufacturers are continuously working on innovative solutions and improvements in their designs and materials. Advanced materials, such as corrosion-resistant alloys and special coatings, are being used to enhance the heat exchanger’s resistance to fouling and corrosion, extending their lifespan and reducing maintenance requirements. Additionally, manufacturers are developing improved heat exchanger configurations and optimizing surface designs to minimize fouling and pressure drop while maximizing heat transfer efficiency. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and other simulation tools are being employed to better understand and predict fluid flow patterns, enabling manufacturers to design heat exchangers that are more efficient and better suited to specific applications.
In response to freezing or solidification challenges, heat exchanger manufacturers are incorporating features like bypass lines, preheating systems, or heat tracing to prevent fluid freezing and maintain smooth operation. Some manufacturers are also exploring the use of phase-change materials in certain heat exchanger designs to address this limitation effectively.
Furthermore, advancements in heat exchanger monitoring and control technologies allow for real-time performance monitoring, helping to detect fouling, corrosion, or other operational issues early on. This proactive approach enables timely maintenance and reduces downtime, enhancing the overall reliability and efficiency of the heat exchanger systems.
Manufacturers are also investing in research and development to create customized heat exchangers for specific applications. By tailoring the heat exchanger’s design, materials, and size to the particular requirements of an application, they can ensure optimal heat transfer and minimize limitations.
In summary, heat exchangers have certain limitations related to fouling, corrosion, pressure drop, material selection, and dealing with freezing fluids. Manufacturers are actively addressing these limitations through the use of advanced materials, innovative designs, simulation tools, phase-change materials, and improved monitoring and control technologies. By continually pushing the boundaries of heat exchanger technology, manufacturers are striving to overcome these challenges and deliver more efficient, reliable, and application-specific heat exchanger solutions.
Benefits of Heat Exchangers
Heat exchangers offer numerous benefits across various industrial, commercial, and residential applications, making them indispensable components of heat transfer systems. One of the primary advantages of heat exchangers is their ability to facilitate efficient heat transfer between two fluids, either for heating or cooling purposes. By transferring thermal energy from one fluid to another, heat exchangers enable energy conservation, reducing the overall energy consumption of the system.
Another significant benefit is enhanced safety. Heat exchangers help segregate the two fluids, preventing direct contact between them, which is particularly crucial when dealing with hazardous or toxic substances. This isolation minimizes the risk of contamination and ensures a safer working environment.
Heat exchangers also contribute to space efficiency due to their compact and versatile designs. Their compact nature allows for installation in confined spaces, making them suitable for various applications, even in areas with limited room for equipment.
In industrial processes, heat exchangers aid in maintaining optimal operating temperatures. By efficiently removing excess heat generated during manufacturing processes, heat exchangers prevent overheating, which can lead to equipment damage and production inefficiencies.
The benefits of heat exchangers extend to cost savings as well. Energy-efficient heat transfer leads to reduced utility expenses, making heat exchangers an economically viable choice in the long run. Moreover, heat recovery applications, where waste heat is captured and reused, can significantly lower operational costs and minimize environmental impact.
Heat exchangers also play a vital role in promoting environmental sustainability. By reducing energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, they contribute to eco-friendly practices, aligning with the goals of many industries and governments worldwide.
Furthermore, heat exchangers are durable and require minimal maintenance when appropriately selected and operated. This longevity translates to increased reliability and reduced downtime, ensuring continuous and uninterrupted operation of the system.
In summary, heat exchangers provide a host of benefits, including efficient heat transfer, improved safety, space efficiency, optimal operating temperatures, cost savings, environmental sustainability, and enhanced reliability. These advantages make heat exchangers invaluable components in a wide range of applications, contributing to improved performance and overall system efficiency.
Applications of Heat Exchangers
As a result of the numerous benefits, heat exchangers find application in an extensive range of industries, such as:
Heat exchangers are crucial components in refrigeration systems, where they transfer heat to maintain low temperatures inside refrigerators and air conditioning units.
Heat exchangers play a vital role in space heating systems, where they transfer heat from hot water or steam to warm the air in buildings.
In air conditioning systems, heat exchangers cool and dehumidify the air by transferring heat between the indoor and outdoor environments.
Chemical processes often involve heat transfer for temperature control or heat recovery, and heat exchangers are used to achieve efficient thermal management.
In petrochemical industries, heat exchangers are utilized for various applications, including preheating feedstock, cooling process streams, and recovering heat from hot gases.
Heat exchangers are integral to power generation, helping to cool steam in thermal power plants or transferring heat in nuclear power plants.
Refineries use heat exchangers to process crude oil, separate hydrocarbons, and cool various streams during refining operations.
Heat exchangers are employed in sewage treatment facilities to recover heat from wastewater streams or control the temperature of biological processes.
In cryogenic applications, heat exchangers are essential for liquefying gases like oxygen, nitrogen, or natural gas for storage or transportation.
Heat exchangers are widely used in vehicles for engine cooling (radiator) and air conditioning (condenser).
Heat exchangers are found in marine vessels to cool engines, control hydraulic systems, or desalinate seawater.
In brewing processes, heat exchangers help control fermentation temperatures and facilitate the cooling of wort.
Natural Gas Processing
Heat exchangers are employed in natural gas processing plants to cool and condense natural gas into liquid form (liquefied natural gas or LNG) for storage and transportation.
In all these applications, heat exchangers are chosen based on factors such as the specific fluid properties, required temperature ranges, pressure conditions, and overall system design. The versatility and efficiency of heat exchangers make them indispensable components in various industries, enabling cost-effective heat transfer and energy conservation.
Choosing the Correct Heat Exchanger Manufacturer
To ensure you have the most productive outcome when purchasing a heat exchanger from a heat exchanger manufacturer, it is important to compare several companies using our directory of heat exchanger manufacturers. Each heat exchanger manufacturer has a business profile page highlighting their areas of experience and capabilities, and a contact form to directly communicate with the manufacturer for more information or request a quote. Review each heat exchanger business website using our patented website previewer to quickly learn what each business specializes in. Then, use our simple RFQ form to contact multiple heat exchanger companies with the same form.
Heat Exchanger Informational Video
Heat Exchanger Power Pages
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Plate Heat Exchanger
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