Transcritical CO2 heat pump system, Dynamic COP
This paper presents experimental investigations of the dynamics of a transcritical CO2 heat pump system with two thermal storages for simultaneous cooling and heating application. The preliminary results of the thermal battery are provided using a small-scale test bed that shows the accelerated penetration of renewable energy sources for building heating and cooling applications. The experimental system consists of a CO2 heat pump system with a compressor of 3 kW (1.02x104 BTU/hr) cooling capacity and two water tanks. During operation, the compressor and expansion valve are considered quasi-static. Thermal sensors are located in each of the two tanks to monitor the temperature gradient of water along the vertical orientation of the tank which impacts the overall system performance. Experiments are carried out under different water circulation flow rates for both the gas cooler and the evaporator in the heat pump, as well as under various discharge pressure conditions controlled by different charging rates and expansion valve openings. The impacts of water circulation flow rate and valve opening are reported in an effort to find the optimum coefficient-of-performance (COP). The results show that increasing the water inlet temperature in the gas cooler raises the discharge pressure significantly and drops the COP, whereas increasing the water temperature of the evaporator raises the discharge pressure relatively moderately. Although a larger water flow rate enhances the heat exchanger capacity and system COP, a smaller water flow rate seems to be preferable to maintain the thermal profile of the water tanks and to provide a more stable COP. At higher gas cooler water inlet temperature, the COP tends to increase with closing expansion valve. In this particular setup, the best COP is found to be approximately 7.0 at a specific expansion valve opening and at a discharge pressure between 75 and 83 bars (1088 to 1204 psia). The heating COP negatively corresponds to the water temperature at the gas cooler inlet. Experiments suggest the need of a proper control strategy and a matched tank capacity design. Based on these results, a 20% power enhancement may be possible by controlling the hot and cold water flow rates.