A new air-cooled steam condenser test laboratory will include a wind tunnel to evaluate ACC heat exchanger performance for the full-size (more than 35' tall) bundles required for many power plant applications. Evapco designed, built and commissioned the laboratory, which is located in the Wilson E. Bradley Research & Development Center at the company headquarters in Taneytown, Md.
According to the company, the laboratory process loop produces steam under vacuum in conditions typically utilized in power or other process plant applications. The ability to test heat exchangers with steam under vacuum rather than hot water makes the facility unique. The company expects the laboratory to allow Evapco engineers to optimize the air-cooled condenser design with precision. Testing will pay particular attention to phenomena such as freezing, air leakage, impingement, flow accelerated corrosion and the high parasitic power losses associated with air-cooled condensers.