Adiabatic cooling explained

When a client of ours, ears ringing with countless forecaster warnings of yet another sweltering summer, wanted to discuss innovation in air condition, given the age of his perfectly maintained but old system, the expression Adiabatic cooling cropped up.

I immediately suspected our client had been on Google, but had failed to find an easy explanation of the process, so for his benefit and anybody else who’s interested, here goes.

As with many of mankind’s best ideas, we have taken our cue from Mother Nature, who has been using this very process for millions of years. In the same way that we all naturally sweat when we’re hot to help us cool down, adiabatic cooling technology draws warm ambient air through a wetted filter which causes some of the water to evaporate and cool the ambient air down.

The outside air is humidified and then used to cool the supply air indirectly via a heat exchanger. As a result, there is no humidification or contamination of the supply air.

They are designed to pre-cool the air inlet stream into the heat exchange coils. Where the ambient temperature is high, adiabatic coolers utilise mains cold water by spraying a fine mist over the condenser coils which in line with the air drawn in from the fans creates the required temperature for the process.

And to minimise water wastage, the system will recirculate water so that it does not lose water from its reservoir and can continually be re-used. An adiabatic cooler will use up to 90 per cent less power compared with traditional compressor based air conditioning units.

On a very hot day in the UK, a typical adiabatic cooler will use an estimated 100 litres per hour, which might sound a lot, but not when compared to the 80 litres an average shower uses – now the client was interested by talk of energy efficiency.

At a time when building operators are looking to reduce their carbon footprint and general environmental impact, this innovative technology can be a solution. Adiabatic systems offer multiple benefits and are already in widespread use in shopping centres, sports facilities, offices, factories and retail stores around the world.

You could save thousands in running costs, depending on the size of the installation and the water does not require further chemical treatment, it provides energy efficient cooling and it poses less health risks.

If, like our client, you are considering installing a new cooling system in your building, it would be good to talk. We’ll show you how adiabatic cooling will not only keep your building cool, but ensure you have a happier, more comfortable workforce. Less absenteeism and more productivity sounds like a good reason to talk doesn’t it?

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