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Development of a hybrid refrigerator combining thermoelectric and vapour compression technologies.

Author(s) : VIÁN J. G., ASTRAIN D.

Type of article: Article

Summary

A domestic refrigerator with three compartments has been developed: refrigerator compartment, at 4°C (vapour compression cooling system); freezer compartment, at -22°C (vapour compression cooling system); and a new super-conservation compartment, at 0°C (thermoelectric cooling system). The thermoelectric system designed for the super-conservation compartment eliminates the oscillation of its temperature due to the start and stop compressor cycles, obtaining a constant temperature and thus, a better preservation of the food. For the design and optimization of this application, a computational model, based in the numerical method of finite differences, has been developed. This model allows to simulate the complete hybrid refrigerator (vapour compression-thermoelectricity). The accuracy of the model has been experimentally checked, with a maximum error of 1.2°C for temperature values, and 8% for electric power consumption. By simulations with the computational model, the design of the refrigerator has been optimized, obtaining a final prototype highly competitive, by the features on food preservation and power consumption: 1.15 kW h per day (48.1 W) for an ambient temperature of 25°C. According to European rules, this power consumption value means that this new refrigerator could be included on energy efficiency class B. [Reprinted with permission from Elsevier. Copyright, 2009].

Details

  • Original title: Development of a hybrid refrigerator combining thermoelectric and vapour compression technologies.
  • Record ID : 2010-0813
  • Languages: English
  • Source: Applied thermal Engineering - vol. 29 - n. 16
  • Publication date: 2009/11
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.applthermaleng.2009.05.006

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