Steam Recompression Systems: Efficiently Recycling Heat Energy
Croll Reynolds has been involved in heat recovery since the 1940s when our Thermocompressors were first used by the US food and dairy industries to recapture and recompress spent steam from multi-effect evaporators. The applications for thermocompressors continue to expand as process engineers in the petroleum, chemical, power, food and paper industries find areas of plant operations where the energy from steam can be recaptured and reused.
The ejector is applied to produce vacuum . The thermocompressor is designed to entrain and compress a low pressure fluid to an intermediate pressure. The heat value of the recompressed fluid, commonly steam, can then be reclaimed and reused elsewhere.
The advantage of the thermocompressor vs a mechanical compressors is the absence of moving parts, low maintainance costs and very low capital cost.
Mechanical design: The mechanical design of the thermocompressor is similar to that of the steam ejector. Like the ejector, a thermocompressor consists of four component parts , the nozzle holder, nozzle, steam chest and diffuser. Thermocompressors are designed in single, multiple, or adjustable nozzle configurations depending on the application.
Operation: Like an ejector, the thermocompressor uses a high pressure steam as a motive fluid. The motive fluid is piped into a steam chest and expands through a converging-diverging nozzle. This high velocity stream entrains the steam entering the suction inlet and the mixed fluids are then compressed to an intermediate pressure as they pass through the diffuser ( throat ). The diffuser acts as a nozzle in reverse, reconverting velocity energy to pressure energy.