Experiments for measuring adsorption characteristics of an activated carbon fiber/ethanol pair using a plate-fin heat exchanger

Bidyut Baran Saha, Shigeru Koyama, Ibrahim I. El-Sharkawy, Ken Kuwahara, Keishi Kariya, Kim Choon Ng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


This article aims to improve the performance of a thermally powered adsorption cooling cycle by selecting a new adsorbent/refrigerant pair. Adsorption capacity of an adsorbent/refrigerant pair depends mainly on the porous properties (surface area, pore size, and pore volume) of the adsorbent and isothermal characteristics of the adsorbent/refrigerant pair. In this paper, the porous properties of three pitch types' activated carbon fibers (ACFs), namely, ACF (A-20), ACF (A-15), and ACF (A-10), are determined from the nitrogen adsorption isotherms and compared with those of silica gels. Standard nitrogen gas adsorption/desorption measurements of six different adsorbents at liquid nitrogen temperature of 77.3 K were done. ACFs have large surface areas and their adsorption/desorption rates are rapid due to the existence of numerous micropores in the vicinity of the fiber surface. ACF (A-20) possesses the highest surface area among all six adsorbents. Nitrogen adsorption/desorption isotherm results showed that ACF (A-20) has higher adsorption capacity in comparison with those of the other two ACFs. The experimental equilibrium adsorption capacity of ethanol on ACF (A-20) is as high as 0.797 kg/kg. From the above perspective, an intermittent adsorption refrigeration system using an ACF (A-20)/ethanol pair is developed. Experiments are performed to determine the temperature and pressure profiles, along with the various heat transfer rates and overall heat transfer coefficient during preheating and desorption processes of the reactor bed, which play important roles in cooling system performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)767-782
Number of pages16
JournalHVAC and R Research
StatePublished - Aug 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction


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