Summer is coming up quick and millions of people will turn on that marvel of discovery and invention–the air conditioner. Invented in 1902 by Haviland Carrier, the air conditioner has greatly improved our quality of life. How in the world did people live without this awesome invention?
According to a survey of ASME members in the year 2000, the air conditioning/refrigeration was consider to be among the 10 greatest mechanical engineering achievements of the 20th century. How does it actually work?
Cooling coils remove heat and humidity from the air using refrigerant.
A blower (or fan) circulates air over the evaporator, dispersing the chilled air
Hot coils release the collected heat into the outside air.
A pump that moves refrigerant between the evaporator and the condenser to chill the indoor air.
A fan blows air over the condenser to dissipate the heat outside.
Located in the air conditioning unit to remove particles from the air.
A control system to regulate the amount of cool air that is distributed.
SOURCES: Energy Saver (www.energy.gov/energysaver), the Energy Department’s Building Technologies Office (www.energy.gov/eere/buildings/building-technologies-office), Energy Star (www.energystar.gov), Weatherization Assistance Program Technical Assistance Center (www.waptac.org)