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Modern cooling systems, such as ones used for air conditioning as well as refrigeration, utilize a physical phenomenon where pressurized, compressed gas is allowed to expand causing its temperature to drop.
Cooling systems utilizing this phenomenon were invented at the beginning of the twentieth century. Although they’ve become more complex over the years, the type of gas used has changed and other developments occurred, the basic principle of operation has stayed the same.
In the next paragraphs, we’ll describe how cooling systems work and what anyone who uses them should be aware of so that they may serve them well for many years.

Gas Heats Up when Pressurized and Cools when Allowed to Expand

Cooling in HVAC systems, as in domestic and industrial refrigerators, works by harnessing the temperature drop experienced as compressed gas is allowed to expand in volume (and the pressure the gas is at drops). When gas is compressed its temperature rises, this is because molecules of gas are kept pressed tighter together causing them to collide more often and “rub” against each other more forcibly. When the gas is allowed to expand the opposite happens and its temperature drops, sometimes by over 30 degrees centigrade (86 deg. Fahrenheit).
In cooling systems, there’s a compressor powered by an electric motor. The compressor compresses the gas while the heat generated is let out through a radiator (many times an electric fan is used to help in getting rid of the heat). The compressed gas is transferred under pressure to the cooling unit where it is allowed to expand and cool. Air is blown over the pipes where the gas expands, the air cools, flows into the room and causes the temperature to drop.

Water Condensation

When air is cooled some water vapor will inevitable condensate into liquid drops of water. How much water will form depends on how humid the air and by how much it is cooled. This water must be let out, drainage pipes are used and must be kept open so that water level does not build up within the system.

Proper Maintenance

With cooling systems, proper maintenance is very important. It is essential that intake filters be kept clean, blocked filters will force the system to work at high power bringing on breakdowns. It is also important to keep the area where the compressor is free of dust and dirt, ensuring the engine does not over heat. Free flow of condensation water must be maintained.


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