What is Refrigeration: Definition and 87 Discussions

The term refrigeration means cooling a space, substance or system to lower and/or maintain its temperature below the ambient one (while the removed heat is rejected at a higher temperature). In other words, refrigeration is artificial (human-made) cooling. Energy in the form of heat is removed from a low-temperature reservoir and transferred to a high-temperature reservoir. The work of energy transfer is traditionally driven by mechanical means, but can also be driven by heat, magnetism, electricity, laser, or other means. Refrigeration has many applications, including household refrigerators, industrial freezers, cryogenics, and air conditioning. Heat pumps may use the heat output of the refrigeration process, and also may be designed to be reversible, but are otherwise similar to air conditioning units.
Refrigeration has had a large impact on industry, lifestyle, agriculture, and settlement patterns. The idea of preserving food dates back to at least the ancient Roman and Chinese empires. However, mechanical refrigeration technology has rapidly evolved in the last century, from ice harvesting to temperature-controlled rail cars. The introduction of refrigerated rail cars contributed to the westward expansion of the United States, allowing settlement in areas that were not on main transport channels such as rivers, harbors, or valley trails. Settlements were also developing in infertile parts of the country, filled with newly discovered natural resources.
These new settlement patterns sparked the building of large cities which are able to thrive in areas that were otherwise thought to be inhospitable, such as Houston, Texas, and Las Vegas, Nevada. In most developed countries, cities are heavily dependent upon refrigeration in supermarkets in order to obtain their food for daily consumption. The increase in food sources has led to a larger concentration of agricultural sales coming from a smaller percentage of farms. Farms today have a much larger output per person in comparison to the late 1800s. This has resulted in new food sources available to entire populations, which has had a large impact on the nutrition of society.

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  1. B

    Vapour Absorption Cycle Questions

    Hi all, I'm doing some research on vapour absorption cycle machines, mainly water ammonia refrigerators. I've got a few questions. 1. What is the role of the water absorber? ie why do we need the water? 2. In the absorber we have a water ammonia solution. Is the ammonia a gas in the solution...
  2. questionmonkey123

    Will this increase the Coefficient of performance of my refrigerator?

    If I orient my refrigerator such that the condenser coils at the back are facing a glass door (least insulation in room, cold outdoors) will CP increase? CP=Qc/(Qh-Qc) so Qh-Qc will be smaller thus CP larger. Could this damage refrigerator?
  3. S

    Designing an Actual Vapor-Compression Refrigeration Cycle

    Greetings! I'm a recent ME grad and I'm trying to design a refrigeration system for the first time. I understand most of the theory and calculations (I guess not, cause I wouldn't be here otherwise), but I'm having difficulty applying it to the real world. Homework problems in college often...
  4. yecko

    COP - refrigeration cycle

    Can efficiency be larger than 100%? I have double checked the values of enthalpy of point 1,2,3 from R-22 tables. And I obtained enthalpy of point 4 from the work done given. Thank you.
  5. yecko

    Vapor-compression refrigeration system - boiling & critical point

    Is it the lower the boiling point the better? As room pressure and temperature already can change the phase without working at vacuum? And the higher critical point means it is hard to reach super critical phase? But there is transcritical CO2 cycle, which the critical point is so low, and...
  6. yecko

    Enthelpy table application in a refrigeration problem

    How to get h3 = 111.37? According to table a-13, sat temp@1.2MPa = 46.29oC, and T3 is lower than that. So the refrigerant should be totally in liquid state, and heat capacity should be used instead. However, from textbook, no heat capacity is given from table. If graph of A14 is used, at 1.2MPa...
  7. heatupgrade

    Is the refrigeration process reversible?

    The refrigeration process is used in air conditioning to dehumidify and control temperatures in homes and buildings. The heating industry preceded the air conditioning business and many evaporator coils were placed on top of furnaces to create split systems and utilize existing ductwork. The...
  8. V

    Einstein Refrigeration: Constructing the System with Limited Knowledge

    My question is generated by a an unsuccessful attempt to construct the einstein system with limited knowledge. The first part the counter flow of different gasses (See attachment No1) The main part is the simplified Einstein is what prevents counter flow in this system. I think that perhaps...
  9. M

    Refrigerant Storage in Off System: Gas or Liquid?

    WHERE is the refrigerant stored in the refrigeration system when the system is in OFF and in WHAT state Gas or Liquid ?
  10. Foreverlearning

    I The role of capillaries in a dilution refrigerator

    I've been trying to understand how dilution refrigerators work and inbetween intermediate steps, between different temperature points, I see capillaries here and there under the name of impedances. After some googling, I somewhat convinced myself that it's to build up pressure before and after...
  11. physea

    I Understanding the Parameters of an Ideal Refrigeration Cycle

    Hello, Can anyone tell me please the P,V,h, etc, ie all parameters for an ideal refrigeration cycle? I am not sure which points of the cycle have same pressure, temperature, etc. Thanks!
  12. T

    Calculate minimum work input of refrigeration cycle

    Homework Statement The temperature of a 12-oz (0.354-L) can of soft drink is reduced from 20 to 5 ºC by a refrigeration cycle. The cycle receives energy by heat transfer from the soft drink and discharges energy by heat transfer at 20 ºC to the surroundings. There are no other heat transfers...
  13. Yousef Dajani

    Why do we use Cascade Refrigeration Systems?

    I know that the Cascade Refrigeration Systems are more efficient than the normal Refrigeration Systems, but I still don't know why?
  14. Sheroff

    Which Pressure Gauge Determines Saturation Temperature in a Closed Loop Pipe?

    water is flowing in the closed looped pipe equipped with preheater. there are pressure and temperature gauges before the preheater and after the preheater. which pressure gauge should i use to know whether the outlet preheater temperature has reached the saturation temperature?
  15. P

    Problems caused by cavitation in absroption refrigeration

    All of us have some idea about cavitation process. I want to know how much cavitation can cause problem in the absorption refrigeration process.
  16. Ravi Singh choudhary

    How increase in evaporator increases Refrigeration effect?

    It appears very non intuitive to me seeing TS diagram of vapour compression system; Area under the curve increases. But how seriously how higher evaporator temperature will lead to higher refrigeration effect. Refrigeration effect means lower temperature.
  17. R

    Thermodynamics: Brayton Refrigeration Cycle with Regenerator

    I have a brayton refrigeration cycle with a regeneator same as the picture below only with irreversible regenrator, compressor and turbine (And different values). The given in my problem are: Ti=0 C, T3= 35 C, T5= -80 C, mass flow rate m= 0.4 kg/s Turbine efficiency Et=0.85, Compressor...
  18. Ravi Singh choudhary

    What will be the equilibrium state in the liquid N2 chamber?

    Suppose there is a test chamber containing liquid nitrogen. The container is insulated and only a small opening is there so that chamber is exposed to atmospheric condition. As the saturation temperature of liquid nitrogen is -196 degree Celsius at 1 atm pressure. chamber will remain at -196...
  19. Hare Krishna

    Refrigeration with PCM (phase change material)

    Can we really reduce the compressor work by adding phase change material in evaporator. theoretically, it looks that it'll work but still confusion remains...
  20. I

    Confused on a question about vapour refrigeration cycle

    Homework Statement http://photouploads.com/images/ae1d2f.png Homework Equations N/A The Attempt at a Solution In the image linked above, I have copied and pasted 4 different slides. In the last slide, I am confused how they got the expression for T2 (the working out). I know that they did...
  21. N

    Refrigeration: Coefficient of Performance (Carnot & Lorenz)

    Homework Statement Cooling of a food from 293K (20 ⁰C), freezing it at 272K (-1⁰C), and further cooling to 253K (-20 ⁰C); using cooling water rising in temperature from 293K (20 ⁰C) to 303K (30 ⁰C) to accept heat. The specific heat of the unfrozen food is taken as 3.2 kJ/kg K, that of the...
  22. C

    Heat Rejection process of Carnot Refrigeration

    Hi there, I just sign up today. I'm curious to know about the energy added/released in a Carnot Refrigeration Cycle. Let's say the problem is like this: A Carnot Refrigerator used refrigerant-134a as the working fluid. During the heat addition process, a percentage of mass of the refrigerant...
  23. J

    Understanding Refrigeration & Reverse Carnot Cycle

    The refrigeration cycle is often likened to a reverse Carnot cycle. I pretty much understand the Carnot cycle, but in relating it to a household refrigerator, I am lost. Where is the adiabatic compression done on the machine (inside vs. outside) , and where is the adiabatic expansion? How is...
  24. E

    The disappearance of Absorption Refrigeration

    Hi, After a course on refrigeration and air con over the summer I'm looking for a subject to study for a dissertation next year. From the course I'm very interested in absorption refrigeration as it could have great potential for less economically developed countries and refugee camps. I've...
  25. B

    Short term, Light weight, Low volume Refrigeration Design

    Hello Guys, This is my first time posting here - just wondering if anyone has some insight on a project that I am working on. I want to be able to temperature control an insulated shoe box sized volume at ~5 degrees Celsius for about 20 minutes. The main constraints are that I would need the...
  26. Soumalya

    COP of Reversible Refrigeration Cycles

    Considering two thermal energy reservoirs, one at a higher temperature of TH compared to the other at TL, if we operate a reversible refrigeration cycle between the reservoirs then its coefficient of performance is given by, COPR,rev=TL/TH-TL This is the basically the maximum COP a...
  27. A

    Scroll compressor modeling

    Hi, I am currently trying to model a water-cooled scroll compressor but do not have enough data to predict output conditions. At the moment, I can collect inlet and discharge pressure, outlet temperature, water mass flow rate as well as inlet and outlet temperature. I would like to be able to...
  28. M

    Refrigerant for AC and refrigerator

    Can we use same refrigerant for both air conditioner and refrigerator?
  29. R

    Design of Vapour Compression Refrigeration Cycle

    Hi! For our class project, we have to design a system that freezes an amount of water as quick as possible. The refrigerant is R134a. The compressor is known. I don't really know how to get started here. How do I choose the evaporator pressure and the superheating, and equally the condensor...
  30. Salah_Abdulla

    What to do to focus on design field of refrigeration?

    I'm graduated in mechanical engineering. I would like to do MS on Refrigeration from USA. Then I would like to focus on design fields. But currently I'm working in the field of steel structure erection. Hope your suggestions and advices to change career.
  31. P

    Refrigerator Compressors Already have Refrigerant?

    I am a little confused, because I know how refrigerators work with a refrigerant and a compressor and heat exchanges, and I am looking to build one myself, just wondering because I was looking for refrigerator compressors online to buy. Do they have an inlet for refrigerant or is the...
  32. M

    Throttling in Refrigeration Cycles

    Hi all, The process of throttling in refrigeration is taken to be isenthalpic. And as enthalpy remains constant then so should the temperature. But in the TS diag of the process it shows a drop of temperature from Thigher to Tlower. Please help me regarding this. Thanks!
  33. T

    Refrigeration heat in vs. heat out

    Greetings, I wonder what are the usual thermal efficiency for vapor compressor (refrigeration cycle), and only speaking thermal efficiency. I mean COP describes the heat energy pumped vs. work put in. But since some of the work is converted to mechanical energy and to other forms than heat...
  34. T

    Evaporative cooling = refrigeration?

    I need convincing that evaporative cooling is refrigeration in the sense of a heat engine run backwards. It has the outward appearance of refrigeration. Take perspiration, for example. Your body temperature drops even though the ambient air temperature is hotter. It requires work. You need a...
  35. Q

    Absorption Refrigeration

    Hello people I need your help. I am kind new to refrigeration and I want to design one. I have a waste exhaust heat from the Exhaust of the tunnel oven that I have designed. Now I want to use that waste heat as the heat source for the Absorption refrigerator. Q1: what's the best solution I...
  36. EVriderDK

    Refrigeration theory: Why does the compression follow an isentrope?

    When you have a perfect compressor the compression will follow an isentropic line and an h,log(p)-diragram (enthalpy,pressure diagram) but why? What is entropy exactly and what does it mean in such a system? In real life the compressors have an isentropic efficiency of maybe 0.8, which will...
  37. A

    Refrigeration Cycle: Understanding qL/wc & qH

    I'm trying to get a good understanding of the two images attached. So when calculating the coefficient of performance, I will need to use qL/wc. This is something that I've read in my textbook. Now when I was working with another student on this he told me that the work of the compressor...
  38. C

    Transition in magnetic refrigeration

    Homework Statement The graph below (see attached) shows the measured magnetization against temperature at room pressure for the material Gd and for another material for use in a magnetic refrigerator at room temperature. 1)Calculate the expected change of temperature of a thermally isolated...
  39. V

    Refrigeration - Work required to run heat pump

    This question has got me quite confused, some guidance would be really appreciated. A room is to be kept at 23C using a heat pump from ambient. Heat gain to the room is 1.5kW per degree Celsius difference between the atmosphere and the room. 1) If the outside temperature is 32C, what is the...
  40. Y

    Vapor-Compression Refrigeration System Optimization

    A simple vapor compression system. Based on constitutive relationships between pressure, temperature, enthalpy, etc., the system has four degrees of freedom. The two pressures in the system(p1 and p2), the level of superheat at the compressor outlet (T2) and the masss flow rate of the...
  41. R

    Finding Temperature at stage four, Refrigeration Cycle

    Dear all, This is for a theoretical system, which is trying to represent an 'actual' vapour compression cycle. I have the pressure, temperature, enthalpy and entropy at stage four of a single stage cycle. Stage four is the stage where refrigerant leaves expansion valve and enters...
  42. R

    Symbols used to represent surface area Ratio in Refrigeration

    Dear all, Does anyone know common symbols used to represent the ratio of two surface areas? The ratio is the surface area of low temp. heat exchanger divided by the total surface area of low and high temp. heat exchanger: AL/AT = area ratio, i want to find or create a symbol for. I would...
  43. R

    Refrigeration Heat Exchanger Design (Evaporator and Condenser)

    Hi There Based on a Vapour compression refrigeration system: Does anyone out there know a good estimate or any real values for the total heat transfer area for the hot and cold sides of a domestic refrigeration system? i.e. the sum of the areas of the evaporator and the condenser. For the...
  44. R

    Overal heat transfer coefficient: Refrigeration Heat Exchanger

    Hi There Does anyone out there know a good estimate or any real values for the total heat transfer area for the hot and cold sides of a domestic refrigeration system? i.e. the sum of the areas of the evaporator and the condenser. For the Evaporator: QL=UL.AL.(TL-T1) AL=heat transfer...
  45. R

    Refrigeration Heat Exchanger Area Ratio Optimization

    The equation for heat transfer is: 1. Q = U.A.(TL-T1) Where: Q= heat transferred (W). U= overal h.t. coefficient. A= area of heat exhanger (m^2). TL= Temp. of refrigerated space (Kelvin) T1= Low temp. of refrigerant= refrigerant in evaporator (K) I want to eventually find the maximum heat...
  46. K

    Can water be cooled below room temperature without refrigeration?

    I got a pretty basic question about the thermodynamics of air cooling water. I have a liquid cooling system for my CPU, and my monitor currently has my CPU temperature at 14C, which translates somewhere in the range of the high 50s F. I keep my house at 78F during the summer. Is it possible...
  47. F

    Refrigeration - Work done by evaporator, condenser, expansion valve

    In vapor compression refrigeration, I know how to calculate the work done by the compressor (enthalpy at outlet - enthalpy at inlet), but I am lost on how to calculate the work done by the evaporator, condenser, and the expansion valve. For the evaporator and condenser, if I wish to have a...
  48. F

    ADR for Middle School Science fair project (Magnetic Refrigeration)

    Hi, I'm curious about doing a middle school science fair project showing how magnetism can be used to cool Gadolinium and thus demonstrate the basis of magnetic refrigeration (ADR). From what I've read it looks like the requirements for generating the required magnetic field would make such...
  49. Z

    Vapor-compression refrigeration cycle

    Homework Statement A conventional vapor-compression refrigeration cycle uses ammonia as the refrigerant. Evaporation and condensation are at -4°C and 34°C respectively and the refrigeration rate is 5kW. The compressor efficiency is 0.75. Assume that the throttle process is isenthalpic...
  50. MacLaddy

    Thermodynamics- Heat engine and refrigeration

    Homework Statement A nuclear power plant generates 2000 MW of heat energy from nuclear reactions in the reactor's core. This energy is used to boil water and produce high-pressure steam at 300° C. The steam spins a turbine, which produces 700 MW of electric power, then the steam is condensed...