Direct Expansion Air-Conditioning, Variable Speed, Fuzzy Logic, Simultaneous control
In small to medium scale buildings located in the subtropics, such as Hong Kong, direct expansion air conditioning (DX A/C) systems are widely applied. This is because, as compared to chilled water based central air conditioning systems, DX A/C systems are compact, flexible for multi-room services, energy efficient and cost less to maintain and operate. However, traditionally, a DX A/C system is equipped with a single-speed compressor and supply air fan, and employs ON / OFF control strategy to maintain indoor air temperature only, leaving the indoor moisture content (or relative humidity) uncontrolled. With the introduction of variable speed technology, the speeds of compressor and supply air fan can be varied continuously so as to realize the simultaneous control of the indoor temperature and humidity. In this paper, the development of a novel control strategy based on PD law and fuzzy logic is reported. The compressor speed was adjusted directly according to the indoor air moisture content and supply air fan speed according to the indoor air temperature, respectively, to realize the simultaneous control of indoor air temperature and humidity. Controllability tests for the novel control strategy were carried out and the test results suggested that, although two control loops for temperature and humidity were significantly coupled, the simultaneous control of indoor temperature and humidity was achieved with respect to control accuracy and sensitivity.