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ECN publication
Coaxial thermoacoustic Stirling integral system: Cooler driven by a two-stage engine
Published by: Publication date:
ECN Efficiency & Infrastructure 2-2-2010
ECN report number: Document type:
ECN-M--10-005 Conference Paper
Number of pages: Full text:
8 Download PDF  

Presented at: 14th International Stirling Engine Conference, Groningen, The Netherlands, 16-18 november 2009.

Environmental implications and increasing energy cost demand improvement of the energy efficiency of the industrial processes. Significant reductions in energy consumption are expected by using heatpumps which can operate at waste heat temperature and upgrade waste heat to process heat temperature. At ECN, thermoacoustics is one of the technologies being investigated to develop such a heatpump. This paper addresses a thermoacoustic integral Stirling system consisting of an engine and a heatpump. The engine consists of two stages in order to reduce the operating temperature so as to facilitate use of waste heat at lower temperatures. The two stage engine drives a heatpump which functions as a cooler. The engine and the cooler are housed in a half wavelength resonator. The objective of this investigation is to study the interaction between the engine and the cooler. Measurements and analysis of the performance of the two stage engine and the integral system are presented. The no-load, lowest temperature reached by the cooler is about -40 °C. This is obtained when the maximum permissible heat (about 200 W for first unit and 240 W for second unit) is applied to the electric heaters in the engine. The maximum efficiency of the engine relative to Carnot is 20.7 % when operating at a drive ratio of 5.0 % and a temperature of 396 °C. The maximum COP relative to Carnot of the cooler is 30.0 % operating at a temperature of 278 K and a drive ratio of 3.0 %. Gedeon streaming in the engine and the cooler is suppressed using an elastic latex membrane near the ambient heat exchangers.

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