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Cooling Tower


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I'm looking for articles, tutorials or video clips / animations on how cooling towers work to provide HVAC for individual living units in larger condo buildings. If anyone can share anything it would be greatly appreciated.

I have a client who would like me to give detailed explanation of exactly how these systems work.

Thanks in advance.

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The main difference between a forced-air centrally-ducted system and a chiller system is that heat is exchanged directly between refrigerant and air on the former. On the latter system, there's three media: refrigerant, water and air. The water conducts the heat between the refrigerant and air. That makes the cooling tower a 'water to air' type of heat exchanger and the condenser is a 'water to refrigerant' heat exchanger, usually located near the compressor to reduce the refrigerant charge.

Chiller systems can be ducted or ductless. Insulated water lines are easier to install than ducts. Yours sounds like a ducted system. That means the coils inside the 'evaporator' actually carry water which means it's not an evaporator, just a heat exchanger with water in the coils.

Marc

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I have a client who would like me to give detailed explanation of exactly how these systems work.

Thanks in advance.

The best thing might be to reach out to the building engineer or maintenance coordinator. They are typically the one with the most knowledge of the building and systems along with keeping the system running.

It sounds like a water source heat pump type system where the cooling tower is used to remove the heat load.

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It's a huge cooling tower on the roof of the building. It cools water and circulates it throughout the building to all the individual condo units. The water passes through coils in the exchanger which is located in the air handler. The air handler blows air across the coils which cools the air.

I'm curious, how would they individually meter a system like this to determine how much the energy bill for cooling each condo unit is?

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I'm curious, how would they individually meter a system like this to determine how much the energy bill for cooling each condo unit is?

Water flow through the coil is one way, you will see a small water meter at the unit. RUBS (ratio utility billing system) is another, where they take the total square footage of the building, number of bedrooms, etc... and divide it back. There are lots of options for back charging the utilities.

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Older condo systems in my area use a common chiller and boiler to either cool or heat (but not both at once) water which is then circulated throughout the entire building.

Individual thermostats turn the residential unit air handlers on or off to provide conditioned air to the residents.

The biggest thing to remember is the lack of ability to have heat when the system is cooling or vice versa.

If it is an older two pipe system the entire system must be either cooling or heating.

This is not a problem in summer or winter but the sudden heat wave or cold snap may leave residents unhappy!

The heating or cooling typically won't be billed individually to residents but will be shared as a percentage of the total or included in the rent/fees as in "bills paid"

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