Advanced Two-Phase Heat Exchangers for Environmental Control
Navy SBIR FY2014.1

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2014.1
Topic No.: N141-068
Topic Title: Advanced Two-Phase Heat Exchangers for Environmental Control
Proposal No.: N141-068-0603
Firm: Optimized Thermal Systems, Inc.
5000 College Ave., Ste. 3105
College Park, Maryland 20740
Contact: Cara Martin
Phone: (866) 485-8233
Web Site:
Abstract: Advanced technologies and designs including microchannels, small diameter tube-fin configurations and surface enhancements, offer performance and cost advantages over traditional tube-fin heat exchangers in air conditioning applications. These developing technologies, however, present some challenges when working with two-phase systems, namely refrigerant maldistribution, which can significantly decrease heat transfer performance. If refrigerant mal-distribution could be improved, or avoided entirely within two-phase systems, the use of advanced technologies as suggested above would be feasible and attractive for both military and commercial air conditioning systems. Optimized Thermal Systems, Inc. proposes evaluating two core potential solutions for the issues presented by two-phase refrigerant maldistribution in evaporators. Analytical investigation and design development will be conducted for creative configurations of both microchannel and small-diameter tube-fin heat exchangers.
Benefits: The project will produce heat exchanger designs that offer reduced weight, material, air side pressure drop, and ultimately capital cost as compared to traditional tube-fin heat exchangers currently in use. More importantly, improvements in system performance will lead to reductions in operating energy consumption and costs. The end result, therefore, is a unit that will provide both an up-front capital and long-term operating cost savings. Identified solutions can be implemented in both military and commercial small scale (3-5 ton) air conditioning systems.