The Advantages of Air To Water Heat Exchangers for Thermal Management in Harsh Environments


Money-saving approach yields longer service life while conserving energy.

Control Panel Cooling Technique Helps Mitigate Hydrogen Sulfide Corrosion Problems with Wastewater Pumping Systems

Air To Water Heat Exchangers provide an energy efficient and reduced manintenance method for cooling electrical control panels.

Enclosure Cooling Units offer a straightforward active-cooling technique for pump control panels, however, they are not necessarily the best choice for all installation locations. Dirt, dust, and other airborne contaminants can clog condenser coils; while corrosive gasses in the environment can lead to premature failures.On the other hand, Air To Water Heat Exchangers can satisfy the same requirements without circulating ambient air within the housing, thereby eliminating the clogging and corrosion problems associated with airborne contamination.

A common threat to organic wastewater handling and treatment systems is the presence of hydrogen sulfide gas. Not only is this gas toxic to humans, but it also contributes heavily to corrosion problems in pipes, structures, instrumentation, and electrical systems. Lift stations and pumping systems are particularly vulnerable as H2S sour gas readily attacks copper used in wires, electrical contacts, and cooling units used on motor control centers (MCC’s).

Electronics cooling is vital for MCC’s containing the variable frequency drives (VFD’s) that are used to maintain efficient operation by conserving energy through regulating the speed at which pumps operate. Since VFD’s generate a considerable amount of heat, it is necessary to employ an active enclosure cooling technique in order to keep VFD’s operating within acceptable temperature limits. The absence of effective cooling will quickly allow VFD’s to overheat, shut down, or even catastrophically fail. In addition to being an economic loss, such outages disrupt production and affect the efficiency of plant operations.

Effective electrical enclosure cooling for environments where H2S gas is present must utilize a closed loop technique to ensure that sour gas is not introduced into the enclosure where it could harm wiring, electrical connections, switches, and other components. In fact, for many installations it is advantageous to deploy an air or nitrogen purge system which creates a positive pressure within the enclosure in order to keep undesirable ambient elements, including sour gas, outside of it. As opposed to an open loop system that uses fans to draw ambient air into and push heat out of the enclosure, a closed loop system maintains isolation of the ambient air and permits the NEMA rating of the electrical enclosure to be maintained. Examples of closed loop cooling equipment for electrical enclosures include cooling units (also known as enclosure air conditioners or enclosure AC) and Air To Water Heat Exchangers.

Cooling units offer the advantage of a being a plug and play solution – they simply hang onto the outside of the enclosure and are connected to power already available inside the enclosure. However, these compressor-based refrigeration systems consume a fair amount of energy and require periodic maintenance. Additionally, to endure the sour gas environment, exposed copper pipes and condenser coils must be treated with a conformal coating – which is not necessarily standard. Over time, the need to clean condenser coils – which may require partial disassembly of the cabinet – can lead to scratched paint, compromised coatings, and eventual corrosion.

Air-to-water Heat Exchangers offer several advantages making them the preferred method for closed-loop, electrical enclosure cooling. Acquisition and operating expenses are significantly lower than those of a compressor-based cooling unit.

Additionally, this product is virtually maintenance free and since there is no ambient air circulation within the unit, there is no risk of H2S sour gas corrosion to internal components.

There are, however, two challenges with acquiring and implementing these units:

  • The units must be specified as the solution of choice with the MCC or pump system integrator.
  • The units must be connected to a viable source of clean water or coolant to circulate through the heat exchanger coil.

Another viable implementation is to consider retrofitting cooling units with air-to-water heat exchangers. This modification can be readily accomplished without difficulty since some units share the same enclosure cut-out. For dissimilar cutouts, an adaptor plate may be required to reduce the size of the opening.

Click here to download the Case study in PDF

Need more information on Pfannenberg’s PWS Air to Water Heat Exchangers? Click here and discover all the advantages of this product!


Topics: Air Water Heat ExchangersEnclosure CoolingThermal ManagementWater CoolingWater TreatmentWastewater Treatment

The Technology of Cooling: Cooling with Closed Loop Cooling Units


Pfannenberg Cooling Units operate on the principle of the Carnot cycle. This means that the cooling unit functions as a heat pump that “pumps” the thermal energy transferred from the electronic cabinet (heat dissipated from the components) up to a higher level of temperature (the ambient temperature can reach levels as high as + 55 °C). The air inside the enclosure is cooled down by the evaporator and at the same time dehumidified.

How do I know if a cooling unit is the right product for my application?

> If the ambient temperature is greater than the target internal temperature of the enclosure, active cooling is required.
> If a NEMA Type 12 to 4x rating is required – closed loop systems can maintain the NEMA Type rating of the cabinet.

Properly sizing a cooling unit:

To properly size a cooling unit you must know the required cooling capacity in Watts, mounting requirements (side, integrated or top mount) and the dimensions of the unit and enclosure.

{PC = PD – PR }
> Pc [ Watt ]: Refrigeration capacity of a cooling unit.
> PD [ Watt ]: Dissipation Loss: Thermal power generated inside a cabinet by the dissipation loss of components.
> PR [ Watt ]: Radiant heat gain/loss: Heat transfer through the skin of the enclosure (insulation factor not included).

{PR = C x A x ∆T }
> C [  W/m2 °C ]: Coefficient of heat transmission.
> A [  M2 ]: Surface area of electronics cabinet.
> ∆T [ °C ]: Difference in temperature between the ambient air and the air inside the electronics cabinet.

Utilizing performance curves to properly size cooling units:

Pfannenberg utilizes the DIN standard 35/35 °C when rating our cooling units. Many other companies use 50/50 °C, which provides a higher, non-usable value.

Customers should use their own application temperatures to determine the proper cooling capacity of the system.

To properly size your Cooling Units you can also use Pfannenberg’s PSS Software which will guide you through the sizing process, to calculate the correct product for your application.


Important information when utilizing cooling units:

  • The refrigeration capacity should exceed the dissipation loss from the installed components by approximately 10%.
  • The enclosure should be sealed to prevent the inflow of ambient air.
  • Use the door contact switch to impede operation with open doors and consequent excessive accumulation of condensation.
  • Use cooling units with maximum clearance between air inflow and air outflow to prevent poor circulation.
  • Make sure that the air inflow and air outflow in the external circuit is not hindered, preventing proper heat exchanging at the condenser.
  • When using top-mounted cooling units, make sure that components with their own fans do not expel the air directly into the cooling unit‘s cool air outflow.
  • Make sure unit is level.
  • Setting the temperature to the lowest setting is not the optimal solution due to the condensation issues. The value we have preset on the cooling unit is a sound compromise between cooling the inside of the enclosure and the accumulation of condensation.

Click here to discover our complete range of Cooling Units!

Topics: Enclosure CoolingCooling UnitsThermal Management

New Thermal Management Solutions with Cloud-Based Remote Monitoring


On the way to Industry 4.0 with Pfannenberg’s innovative Thermal Management Solutions

Pfannenberg will unveil its Thermal Management Solution with cloud-based remote monitoring at Europe’s leading exhibition for electric automation, SPS IPC Drives in Nuremberg, Germany.

Communication is provided by a compact device with an integrated SIM card, which receives the relevant data from the connected cooling units via Modbus – a Building Management Protocol – and transmits it to the cloud over a secure mobile telecommunication link without any need for access to the company’s IT infrastructure.

The solution developed in cooperation with T-Systems enables users or systems to retrieve status data, diagnostic information and alarm notifications from the cooling units, live and independent of location, through a web browser, or to integrate the data directly into their applications.

From November 24-26th,  visitors will have the opportunity to see a working model on display at Stand #339 in Hall 5, and discuss this innovative Thermal Management solution with experts from Pfannenberg to learn more about its functionality and deployment options.

“The smart factory is the wave of the future. As an innovative medium-size company with over 190 patents worldwide, making our cooling solutions fit for networked products is a natural choice”, says Andreas Pfannenberg, Managing Director of the Pfannenberg Group. “With the premium controllers of the newest generation, our cooling units are able to provide a wealth of relevant data. Thanks to the cloud solution, employees in production management, the service department or the maintenance department, as well as higher-level monitoring systems, receive information about possible malfunctions or imminent failures promptly, wherever they are. This enables them to respond quickly before a serious incident occurs, which helps increase machine availability.”

Next-generation of Thermal Management

The Thermal Management demo system on display at the trade show will consist of a two-compartment switchgear cabinet with a semi-recessed DTI cooling unit on one side and a semi-recessed PWI series Air to Water Heat Exchanger on the other side, each equipped with a premium controller. There are three heaters in each cabinet compartments, which can be turned on individually at the front using door-mounted switches to simulate heat loads. On an external monitor visitors will be able to observe how the Enclosure Cooling Unit reacts to changes in the heat load or when opening the cabinet door.


Contact us today to learn more about this innovative solution!

Topics: Air Water Heat ExchangersEnclosure CoolingCooling UnitsThermal Management

Top-Mounted Cooling Units for Electrical Enclosure Cooling


Pfannenberg’s Top-Mount Cooling Units meet all industry demands for costs, space and energy savings.

Proper cooling is essential for temperature regulation in electrical enclosures. Our Top Mount Cooling Units provide 100% protection against condensate with their unique, patented condensate management.


Why choose Pfannenberg’s Top Mount Units :

Compact size
Ideal for narrow production lines, electrical enclosures that are placed tightly together in a row and areas that are required to be kept obstruction free. Their top positioning keeps them protected from mechanical damage.

Energy Efficiency
New Proven, Energy Efficient Micro-Channel Technology (an environmentally friendly solution that using 50% less refrigerant than standard coils). The additional Energy Savings Mode allows the unit to automatically switch off the internal motor.

100% condensate protection
Main features of the DTT’s innovative condensate management include re-positioning of the cooling circuits. Moving the cold area up prevents the cold bridge to the electrical enclosure and also enables a problem-free drainage of condensate. An extensive separation of air flow and evaporator stops the formation of twirling droplets. Lastly the integrated air outlet nozzle makes the use of conventional air hoses unnecessary, minimizing the condensation risk.

Unique Design
The compact, top-mount design allows you to save valuable space to use for other purposes. Its low energy consumption reduces your energy costs. Our DTT Top Mount Units have a unique, revolutionary patented condensate management design. The innovative position of the cooling circuits challenges the traditional design of top mounted units, preventing condensate from penetrating the electrical enclosure.

Flexible
The DTT series are available in three installation sizes and six performance classes – from 500 W to 4,000 W, providing the optimum enclosure cooling from every manufacturer.
Additionally the product range of filter media covers virtually every area, for example aluminum filters for air containing oil or aerosols or fluted filters for highly dusty environments. Pfannenberg’s DTT top mounted cooling units comply with the protection class up to IP54 level of protection for control cabinets.

Service and maintenance friendliness
> Easy, tool-free installation thanks to quick fastening clips on the bottom of the unit.
> A removable cover that can be taken off the front allowing for quick access to the components.
> A Tool-free filter change requiring no screws that can be carried out in seconds.
> Uses the same filter media found in our DTI/DTS series door-mounted and side-mounted cooling units.


Click here if you need more information about our Top-Mounted Cooling Units!

Topics: Enclosure CoolingCooling UnitsThermal Management

Pfannenberg becomes a proudly member of BEMA association


BEMA (Bakery Equipment Manufacturers and Allieds) is an international, non-profit trade association representing leading Bakery and Food Equipment manufacturers and suppliers, whose combined efforts in research and development have led to the continual improvement of the baking and food industries.

This affiliation confirms our commitment to the Baking Industry with our specifically designed Liquid Cooling Solutions perfectly adapted to aggressive ambient air environments and systems that require a very high IP class (up to IP 65).

To avoid operations grinding to a halt, specifically those with flour and high particulate in the air, Pfannenberg’s PWS Series Air to Water Heat Exchangers are an ideal solution for efficient, trouble free cooling for electrical enclosures.. Use an existing glycol or cool water source already available in the factory to cool your electrical cabinets.

If you need a cool liquid source, Pfannenberg also has a complete line of Chillers to complement our Air/Water Heat Exchangers.

 

Click here to learn more about the BEMA association

 

Topics: Air Water Heat ExchangersEnclosure CoolingThermal ManagementCompany News & Annoucements

Pfannenberg Water-Cooled Solutions for Greater Energy Efficiency


Heat is a single common by-product of today’s manufacturing machines that include the advanced automation technology required for both high speed operation and high precision. To keep these processes running, Industrial Cooling is critical.  When ambient conditions are at their worst liquid cooling is an ideal efficient solution.

The Challenge…

One of our machine tool customers needed a customized solution adapted to their customer’s environment allowing their industrial electronics to operate at optimal efficiency. Industrial cooling was needed for a grinding machine requiring cooling control accuracy. This is especially important as it significantly influences the grinding tolerance. The machine sands parts to remove all irregularities before sending them off for further assembly (gear manufacturing), the required control accuracy or hysteresis is up to +- 0.1 K in active units and up to +- 0.5 K in passive units.

The goal was to cool the machine with available water using a passive enclosure cooling unit at a flow temperature of 22°C. The main requirement for this project was that the water from the return flow (returning to the water ring) had to be at least 9°C warmer to match the customer’s own energy efficiency requirements.

The Solution…

After an analysis of their needs, Pfannenberg’s PWW Water to Water Heat Exchangers appeared to be the best solution. Our water-cooled solutions are designed with durable components to ensure the effectiveness and longevity of the critical cooling process at hand.

   


We installed our new passive PWW 6000 into our compatible EB 60 WT Chiller housing which is extremely flexible. Passive water cooling makes sense if the flow temperatures are not too low and if a water circuit is available. This solution works reliably at a temperature difference of more than 5°C between the water circuit and the chiller.

To support this new solution for our customer, Pfannenberg provided 2-days of on-site training bringing “live initial operations” online.

Thanks to the success of this installation, our customer secured 10 more projects using our PWW Water to Water Heat Exchangers with one in China.

Click here to get more information abour our PWW Water to Water Heat Exchangers.

Topics: Enclosure CoolingCooling UnitsThermal ManagementWater Cooling

Pfannenberg Cools Customers Worldwide


Pfannenberg’s North American headquarters are based in Lancaster, NY but the company serves customers around the globe with plants in Germany, Italy, China and recently Brazil.

Our internal company motto is “Sharing Competence” which allows worldwide teams to work together for a better understanding of our customers, providing dedicated service and solutions for projects globally.“This is the basis for our culture of innovation. We work closely with our internal teams, suppliers and customers to share information, developing an internal company know-how,” said Blaine Witt, Chief Sales Officer. “This process allows us to develop products and solutions based on what the market really demands.”

This strategy has not only contributed to receiving recognition as one of  “Western New York’s Fastest Growing Companies” for 2015 but also to global recognition as a recipient of a “Red Dot Award” award, won for our PYRA-MA Flashing Sounder.

Having manufacturing centers worldwide “allows our teams to work together to support the customer’s needs on every continent,” Witt said. “Looking forward, as technology evolves, our innovation will allow us to build new products that are intelligent and able to communicate with other systems.”

Our global presence and market know-how is a real competitive advantage as our Enclosure Thermal Management products help some of the largest companies worldwide stay cool and safe, protecting and keeping electronic equipment running to avoid costly downtime. We also manufacture visual and audible signaling devices for security, industrial fire alarms, building, industrial process, disaster warning, hazardous areas, light art and illumination.”

Click here to read the full article!


Topics: Enclosure CoolingCooling UnitsThermal ManagementNorth AmericaCompany News & Annoucements

Pfannenberg’s Micro-channel AC cooling units for electronics cooling


Micro-Channel cooling is a proven cooling technology that has been used in the Automotive and HVAC industry for over 25 years. Pfannenberg was the first company to introduce micro-channel condenser technology to the industrial process and electrical enclosure cooling industry.

Our extensive 34X1 DTS range features our dual condenser fans with ultra efficient micro-channel condensers designed to meet all industrial environment expectations with products compatible with US regulations as Nema Type 12 indoor, Nema 3R/4 outdoor and Nema Type 4/4x stainless steel for washdown applications.

Pfannenberg’s DTS range of Cooling Units offer a smaller footprint, improved heat transfer efficiency while also providing an environmentally friendly solution by using 50% less refrigerant than standard coils!


Greater Efficiency

The micro-channel condenser coils utilize an ultra-efficient design providing up to 40% more heat rejection thanks to multiple channels
within the tube and a brazed joint between the tube and fin. This improves the transfer of heat from the refrigerant into the ambient air.

Single Row, Less Clogging & Fouling

The single row air flow path of the micro-channel condenser allows for a condenser air flow path that clogs less and is significantly easier to clean during general maintenance.

Corrosion Resistant & Less Weight

The 100% aluminum design with zinc coating increases the corrosion resistance – versus conventional copper tube and fin condensers – and significantly reduces the weight of the product.

Increased Durability

The Cooling Units design provides for a condenser coil that is harder to damage during transit and general handling of the cooling unit.  Fin combing is not required to maintain proper airflow channels.

Cost Effective Design

Machine production of the condenser and the reduced material cost of using aluminum vs copper tubing creates a significant savings over conventional copper tube and fin designs.

Uses 50% Less Refrigerant

In an age where many companies are required to account for and pay fees based on refrigerant usage, having a system that provides the same cooling capacity using 50% less refrigerant is a life saver for plant managers.

Topics: Enclosure CoolingCooling UnitsThermal Management

Pfannenberg’s enclosure cooling units installed in the Gotthard Tunnel


Under construction for 15 years, the 35 mile long Gotthard tunnel located in Switzerland is due to open in 2016.

The Gotthard Base Tunnel impresses with many outstanding features:

  • It is the longest railway tunnel in the world at 57 km and its tunnel run, with all the transverse and connection tunnels, stretches over 154 km.
  • From 2016, passenger trains should have a top speed of 250 km/h, reducing the travelling time e.g. between Milan and Zurich to under 3 hours and should almost double the haulage capacity on the Swiss North-South Axis to 40 m tons of goods.

Operating a tunnel poses a huge challenge for engineers and operators. All products and solutions have to meet the highest requirements and have to work perfectly even under harsh ambient conditions. In particular, this applies to electrical enclosures and their thermal management, which are subject to extreme alternating pressure loads, temperature differences and are also exposed to dust and moisture.

In close collaboration, Swibox and Pfannenberg have developed a special climate control concept for tunnel applications. Robust Swibox electrical enclosures with a pressure body which was developed especially to protect the cooling circuit and the side mounted cooling units with integrated controller and heater from Pfannenberg guarantee a high system uptime which are situated, in the 176 cross passages amongst other places.

These electrical enclosure cooling units ensure that the thermal pressure of the electronic components integrated inside the electrical enclosures does not become too high and that they work safely and reliably throughout their whole service lives.

 

Electrical enclosures withstand every alternating pressure

The largest technical challenges were the high requirements to the system of protection of the electrical enclosure, IP65, and also the high alternating pressure load which is caused by the trains passing through. When entering the tunnel, the train pushes the air ahead of it, causing overpressure until the train passes by the cross passage where the electrical enclosures are standing. As soon as the train has passed, the overpressure transforms suddenly to a corresponding under-pressure.

All the electrical enclosures and the installed cooling units are exposed to the load of this alternating pressure of up to +/- 5 kPa. It had to be ensured that all devices can withstand this alternating pressure mechanically, simultaneously implementing the high system of protection.

It was possible to meet these requirements, thanks to the mechanical unit custom construction developed especially in cooperation with the company Swibox. This construction ensures a leak-proof separation of the surrounding (outer wall of the unit) and the inside of the electrical enclosure (unit inside), also under pressure load. A special feature here is the developed pressure body inside which the components of the inner cooling circuit are housed. Therefore, it was not enough to use reinforced sheet metal: the selection of a suitable material and the increased material thickness in combination with specially installed stiffening plates led to the desired compressive strength.

Climate control concept of electrical enclosures does not only mean cooling

Another challenge in tunnels is the ambient air. Large temperature differences ranging from -20 °C to +40 °C, maximum humidity of 100%, and ferrous abrasion of brakes, rails and contact lines in the ambient air increase the risk of corrosion and show how different a tunnel application is compared to standard applications.

Therefore, a special enclosure climate control concept had to be established for specifically this application. In addition to the cooling units, which are predominantly used inside the mountains (ambient temperatures up to +40 °C), Pfannenberg heaters also had to be installed in the portal sector (ambient temperatures to -20 °C). These heaters ensure that the temperature inside electrical enclosures does not fall below the so-called dew-point (the temperature that moist air has to drop to – by unchanged pressure – so that the amount of water dissolved in the air is precipitated as condensate). At the dew-point, the relative humidity is 100%; that means that the air is saturated with water vapour.

Pfannenberg’s new generation of controllers, designed especially for this project, were also installed. This is especially important to prevent unplanned failures and downtime and, by planning maintenance works in advance, to guarantee a high level of system uptime. The controllers are not only used directly inside the cooling units. The climate controller was also integrated into 500 other electrical enclosures without a cooling unit. This makes a temperature monitoring system possible, which, like the climate control units, can communicate with the tunnel control system and, if necessary, can be replaced with such, without having to reinstall the data transfer.

In 2010 the first cooling units were delivered to the company Swibox. In the meantime, all units have been delivered and will be installed one by one, together with the electrical enclosures, in the 176 cross passages of the Gotthard Base Tunnel. They have already been able to prove their reliability every day, as the various test phases started a while ago and will continue until the start of the scheduled railway operation on 2016.

Click here to read the full Case study!

How to select the right chiller for your application


Whatever your industry, choosing the best packaged chillers to meet the demanding requirements of today’s industrial applications can be complicated. 

For that reason, Pfannenberg designed a 6 step guide to help you select the best chiller depending on your environment, process and type of application.

Click on the picture to open the PDF or use this link!

Pfannenberg designs versatile packaged chillers which are ideal for applications that have cooling requirements of less that a half a ton up to 30 tons. All chillers are shipped as factory packaged systems requiring only field power and piping to provide recirculated chilled coolant to virtually any process. Pfannenberg’s new CC Chillers are ideal for quick setup and trouble free operation.

Click here for more information about our range of Packaged Chillers!

Topics: Enclosure CoolingCooling UnitsPackaged Chillers