Natural Gas Absorption Cooling – Helping to Clear the Air Economically and Efficiently
Absorption cooling first appeared in the mid 1800s and was once common in facilities with large boiler plants, however, its use in the U.S. waned until recent developments in new, more efficient equipment and a changing electric market made it a viable cooling option. In particular, absorption chillers can be the best cooling choice when:
- Electric demand charges are high
- Electricity use rates are high
- Summertime natural gas prices are favorable
- Utility and manufacturer rebates exist
Although absorption chilling is most frequently found in large commercial buildings, today’s equipment is finding its way into a variety of small commercial applications via compact packaged units as well as industrial process operations. One reason for its broad range of uses results from a distinct feature of absorption cooling: the use of heat to produce cooling. Heat for the absorption process can be direct-fired or indirect-fired using recovered waste heat, hot water or steam, or integrated with an on-site power generation system.
The following topical sections will help you better understand how this flexible, efficient and economical technology can meet your cooling needs.