does anyone know where to find an affordable absorption chiller? i saw they tried to make them with regular refrigerant but never came out with a light weight product that was cheap. i think it would be cool to power an a/c with a pellet boiler. ad solarhot water to it as well.
I'd take the two day lag in getting an answer to your question as a "no". We've talked a little about absorption chillers on here, but it never seems to go anywhere. One market is as refrigerators for RVs, and those tend to be pricey, as they think that people who can spend tens of thousands for an RV can spend a couple more to outfit it right. The other market is as ways to get refrigeration out into the boonies in places like Africa, where you could be miles and miles from the nearest electricity. Then they are interested in keeping a package of vaccines refrigerated, and it usually is a small unit with only a couple of liters of volume.
If you are interested, you can become one of the small (and I do mean small) subset of Permies that are interested in developing these things, not just for refrigerator/freezers, but for a/c as well.
Westley and John : Its been a few years since I have done Any hands on Refrigeration work but a quick check at You tube Appears to show swap out units that come
pre-charged and ready for D.I.Y. replacements in both boats and motor homes !
I have been favorably impressed by marine refrigeration units for years and Knew that D.I.Y. repairs were technically doable, but Had not seen much in the way of
D.I.Y. for Motor Homes.
Older models that start to have Roof leak issues often end up in the back lot of R.V dealers, who are usually not interested in ether the man hours to pull a large
refrigeration unit or conversely open a large hole in the side of the RV to make removal of the refrigeration unit easy!
If a Large Expensive RV Is wrecked on the highway or is driven into a low overpass - usually it ends up in the backlot of a car dealership where they quickly
yank out the engine and From twheel-drive transmission/transaxle, then it sets around forever because no-one at the dealers knows how to remove/recycle other
high end Top dollar Fittings, eventually the RV smells like mildew and gets sold to a scrap dealer who must strip it to its shell before crushing it !
I have seen entire camping communities around private lakes filled up with damaged RVs and Trailers that get hauled in and parked under Pole barn type structures,
a few get boxed in with new siding to hide their battle scars and provide cheap 2nd/vacation homes for thrifty Campers !
Two U-tube sites I found were -
www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyCh7aXveow and www.youtube.com/watch?v=toDB1dQmEqc Hopefully a cheap refrigeration swap out is in your future !
For the Craft, Think like FIRE, Flow like a Gas, Don't be the Marshmallow ! As always, your comments and questions are solicited and welcome ! Big AL !
Success has a Thousand Fathers , Failure is an Orphan
Wesley johnsen wrote:does anyone know where to find an affordable absorption chiller? i saw they tried to make them with regular refrigerant but never came out with a light weight product that was cheap. i think it would be cool to power an a/c with a pellet boiler. ad solar hot water to it as well.
I can't find them either. I did some experimentation on absorption - just enough to convince myself that I am not willing to risk the resources required to develop a proper unit. The basic principle is extremely simple, but getting a unit with good performance would require a lot of development work - while getting nickle and dimed to death the entire way.
The practical and cost effective solution for off grid air conditioning is to power small electric motor drive vapor compression units with photovoltaics.
There are solar thermal powered adsorption/absorption systems being developed. The problem I see with this option is that the relatively low temperature heat source (solar heated water) either requires additional electricity consumption and even water consumption (using a cooling tower), or a higher water temperature lowers overall efficiency and raises costs due to thermal losses and/or more expensive collectors to compensate. It turns out that a PV array of the same area as a solar thermal array will achieve the same cooling capacity as a well engineered solar thermal adsorption unit, and do so at a fraction of the cost.
OK, that said, there is one configuration that intrigues me. A modern (but modest) off grid home could in principle be powered completed by biomass in the following manner. A slow moving and reasonably efficient piston steam engine powered by small wood splits could generate DC electricity at a low rate to maintain charge on a very modest battery system. The heat from the steam condenser could provide for all heating applications including space heating during the winter months. An adsorption cooling system might by powered by the steam condenser during summer months. I like this prospect for its low tech approach.
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