Dolphin exchangers are one of the top heat exchangers in UAE. Air Cooled Heat Exchangers (ACHEs) are critical components in many industrial processes. Process fluids are cooled by transferring heat to the ambient air. Therefore, the design of an ACHE is a complex process that requires careful consideration of various factors, including process conditions, materials, and operational requirements.
A chemical plant in a hot and humid climate was experiencing operational issues with its existing ACHE, which was failing to cool the process fluids to the required temperature. Thus, the plant management team recognized the need for a new ACHE design that could address the operational issues and provide reliable cooling performance. Hence, the management team approached a team of mechanical engineers to design a new ACHE.
Dolphin Exchangers Design Process:
At Dolphin, the mechanical engineering team initiated the design process by conducting a detailed analysis of the plant’s process requirements. However, it included the fluid flow rate, inlet temperature, outlet temperature, and pressure drop requirements. Moreover, they also analyzed the local climate data to determine the ambient temperature, humidity, and wind speed.
ACHE Design & usage of CAD Software:
Additionally, using the process and climate data, the mechanical engineering team conducted a preliminary design of the ACHE. It involved selecting the optimal tube and fin geometry, materials, and layout. Further, the team used computer-aided design (CAD) software to develop a 3D model of the ACHE. They conducted computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations to validate the design and optimize the heat transfer performance.
Ensuring reliability of ACHE design:
Thus, to ensure the reliability of the ACHE design, the mechanical engineering team conducted stress analysis. The finite element analysis (FEA) conducted analysis to determine the stress distribution in the ACHE under various operating conditions. In addition, they also conducted a vibration analysis to ensure that the ACHE would not experience any resonance or harmonic vibration under operating conditions.
After completing the design and analysis process, the mechanical engineering team delivered a detailed design report to the plant management team. The report included the ACHE 3D model, design specifications, materials, and manufacturing drawings. The design report demonstrated that the new ACHE design would meet the process requirements and provide reliable cooling performance.
The plant management team approved the ACHE design, and the manufacturing and installation process began. The new ACHE was installed and commissioned, and it provided reliable cooling performance under various process conditions, ambient temperatures, and humidity levels.
To conclude, the design and development of an ACHE is a complex process that requires careful consideration of various factors. Those factors include process requirements, materials, and operational conditions and Dolphin exchangers take care of them all. By using advanced design tools, including CAD, CFD, and FEA, mechanical engineers can develop ACHE designs. The designs provide reliable cooling performance and ensure the safe and efficient operation of industrial processes. The successful design and installation of a new ACHE at the chemical plant demonstrate the value of a rigorous design. Along with it, it demonstrates the development process in delivering reliable and efficient industrial equipment.