On the hottest days of summer, a typical household consumes 20-30% more electricity than average reflecting an increase in air conditioner usage. To address this need, utility companies must invest in expensive and inefficient “peaker plants” to meet high demand which results in increased prices for consumers during peak periods that can last up to eight hours. Our goal was to design a heat exchanger that stores “coolness” to assist with cooling loads during peak periods. Using numerical values representative of the Worcester, MA area, the proposed heat exchanger can store a maximum of 18 kWh of thermal energy and produce air at 16.2°C through a home’s existing heating, ventilation and air conditioning system.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Major Qualifying Project
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