Coolerado

Delphi has signed an agreement with Idalex Technologies to be the world’s exclusive manufacturer of heat and mass exchangers for cooling air using a recently discovered thermodynamic cycle called the Maisotsenko Cycle.

Delphi Corporation has signed an agreement with Idalex Technologies of Arvada, CO, to be the world’s exclusive manufacturer of heat and mass exchangers (HMX) for cooling air using a recently discovered thermodynamic cycle called the Maisotsenko Cycle (M-Cycle).

The Coolerado Cooler, marketed by Idalex subsidiary Coolerado Corporation, is the first product that Delphi will build using the technology. It is already used in a variety of residential, commercial and industrial facilities.

The HMX in the air conditioner uses water as the medium for cooling. In addition, it does not use a compressor or chemical refrigerants, and the only electricity required is for a fan to move air. The HMX works by saturating a working air stream with water that incrementally pulls heat away from both the product and working air streams through unique flow path geometries.

In the Coolerado Cooler, the HMX itself consists of several plates (the actual number varies application to application) of a cellulose-blended fibre that is designed to wick water evenly.

The plates are stacked on each other, separated by channel guides. One side of each plate is also coated with polyethylene. The channel guides that are attached to the polyethylene sides of the plate run along the length of the plate.

The guides that are placed on the cellulose fibre side of the plate run along the width of the plate forming a grid structure within the exchanger. These channel guides are fabricated from an Ethyl Vinyl Acetate (EVA). Their purpose is to provide structure to the exchanger as well as guide air movement within the exchanger.

When assembled, the plastic coated side of the top plate is placed facing down, while the coated side of the second plate is placed facing up. These two plastic-coated plates, when placed together form a dry channel. Conversely, the underside of the second plate, which is uncoated cellulose, is placed with the third plate, uncoated side-up, to form a wet channel.

The exchanger has a trough shape that directs water to drain holes in the trough. The polyethylene coating prevents the dry channel from becoming wet while the troughs guide the water to the non-coated surface of a wet channel below. Through the natural capillary capabilities of the cellulose, the water is evenly distributed through the wet channels resulting in alternating wet and dry channels.

Within the exchanger, the cycle divides the incoming air stream into product air and working air. The product air is always separate from the working air. The product air remains within the plastic coated dry channels the entire length of the exchanger.

The product air is cooled sensibly (rejecting its heat to the working air), and can be designed to cool below the wet bulb and near the dew point temperature. The product air travels the distance of the exchanger and into the space designated for cooling.

The working air channels (the inner-most channels) are blocked at the opposite end of the inlet, preventing the air from ever reaching the product air or cooling space. Upon entering the exchanger, the working air is pre-cooled sensibly in a dry channel. Then, through the design of the heat and mass exchanger, the working air is fractioned into multiple streams which are directed into wet channels.

The heat from the product air is rejected to the working air in the wet channels and then exhausted out of the sides of the exchanger. The special cellulous material used in the manufacture of the exchanger acts as a natural capillary wick within wet channels. The natural wicking assures uniform wetting within the heat exchanger with no excess water, thereby focusing the energy removal on the cooling of the product air stream. The wicking nature of the cellulose material also helps break down the surface tension of the water, resulting in a higher mass and heat transfer rate.

Because the heat from the product air is rejected to the working air through the heat exchange surface of the exchanger, only the product air experiences cooling. The product stream is completely separate from the working air and never comes in contact with a wetted surface unless it is desirable for the application. This cycle occurs multiple times in a short physical space within the same exchanger, resulting in progressively colder temperature as the product air continues to flow across the working air.

Delphi will manufacture the HMX product for Idalex and other customers to incorporate into their air conditioning products.

Delphi expects to begin production for Coolerado in the third quarter of 2005. Delphi and Idalex are also exploring other market applications for HMX such as commercial, industrial and military applications.

Idalex Chief Scientist and the M-Cycle’s namesake, Dr. Valeriy Maisotsenko, said, “We are very excited to have Delphi, a world leader in air conditioning and thermal technology, embrace the M-Cycle with us.”

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