Cooling Towers; Their Purpose and Importance
Cooling Towers are structures that use water evaporation or airflow to remove excess heat from industrial equipment and HVAC systems.
They are essential for power plants, factories, processing / manufacturing plants, hotels and other large commercial buildings that depend on water circulation to discard heat from the building.
Cooling Towers vary of size, shape and type depending on the building’s needs and their cooling load. Larger plants will require large scale towers, where most other facilities have a cooling tower in their HVAC. No matter what the size, they must be properly maintained due to the dangers they can present.
How the cooling tower works
Every cooling tower performs the same fundamental process: hot water goes in and cool water comes out.
Wet cooling towers (also known as open-circuit cooling towers) are some of the most common, and they work like this:
- Hot water, which has been heated by industrial machinery or HVAC systems, is pumped to the cooling tower through pipes
- This hot water sprays through nozzles into a spill area, called “fill media,” this slows the flow of water through the cooling tower and exposes as much water surface area as possible for maximum air-water contact
- As the water flows through the cooling tower, it is exposed to air, from either an induced draft, forced draft, or natural draft
- When the water and air meet, a small amount of water is evaporated, creating the cooling action
- Where some of it evaporates, the cooled water that doesn’t evaporate pools in the bottom of the tower, where it gets recirculated back into your industrial equipment or air conditioning system