Capstone project

Integrated water heating and home cooling system

Increasing cost of electrical power has led to an increased interest in the way structures are cooled. In air conditioning, a large amount of heat has to be removed from a space. Previously this has been by using a vapor compression refrigeration cycle, with the undesired heat being rejected to the atmosphere. This heat is rejected in the condenser after the refrigerant has been compressed. Typically this is first done either with a forced convection or natural convection air cooled condenser, or some sort of liquid medium that is then exposed to the atmosphere. This has been feasible primarily to the abundance of inexpensive electricity. However, it has become worthwhile, with the rising cost of electricity, to somehow recover or use this 'waste' heat. In commercial buildings, this can be done in a number of ways. One is to use the 'waste' heat necessary to cool the building's core to heat the perimeter. Of interest in this project is the use of waste heat to arm water for human use. The goal of this project was to determine the technical feasibility of heating water with 'waste' heat, the economic advantages of recovering the heat, and to determine the most economical heat recovery system. The idea behind any sort of 'economizing' solution is to save the most money for the least cost.