Lee Skolnik


Absorption refrigeration systems are widely accepted as a means of utilizing waste heat from industrial processes to provide cooling to buildings. In many cases waste heat is in the temperature range from 60°C to 90°C. At these relatively low temperatures, conventional absorption refrigeration systems operate at a low coefficient of performance (COP) rendering them economically infeasible. A new concept, the Dual Chamber Vortex Generator (DCVG) has been designed to replace the conventional generator in a lithium bromide-water absorption refrigeration system. The conceptual basis of the DCVG is that a vortical flow would be established inside the DCVG creating a high speed, low pressure region that would augment the separation of refrigerant from the absorbent. The motivation of the DCVG is to improve the COP and allow for absorption refrigeration systems to be an economically feasible means of utilizing waste heat in the 60°C to 90°C temperature range. Environmental benefits would also be realized by using waste heat instead of consuming additional energy resources.

A previously built DCVG was tested on a modified pre-existing test stand. Sixteen experimental trials were conducted in the Applied Fluids Laboratory at Rochester Institute of Technology to assess the DCVG's performance with varying inlet temperatures and varying inlet flow rates to the DCVG. Visual observations as well as temperature, pressure, and flow rate measurements were recorded at various points on the test stand to analyze the DCVG's performance.

Results of this study indicate that high levels of uncertainty cause the collected data to be inconclusive in terms of determining the benefits of the DCVG compared to a conventional generator. A method of comparing the DCVG to a conventional generator is necessary as well. Also, during the experimental trials, a stable vortical flow could not be established in the DCVG. An extensive list of detailed recommendations is provided to direct this project toward its goal of determining whether or not a DCVG is beneficial to an absorption system.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Refrigeration and refrigerating machinery--Design and construction; Vortex generators; Thermodynamics; Heat recovery

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Mechanical Engineering (MS)

Department, Program, or Center

Mechanical Engineering (KGCOE)


Ali Ogut

Advisor/Committee Member

Margaret Bailey

Advisor/Committee Member

Robert Stevens


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at TP492.5 .S46 2006


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