refrigerator, capillary tube, flow pattern, two phase flow, noise
The preferred cooling process for household refrigeration appliances is a vapor compression refrigeration process with a capillary tube as expansion device. The vapor compression refrigeration system requires a phase change of the refrigerant inside the condenser and evaporator. Through a direct connection of condenser outlet and capillary tube inlet, which is commonly practiced for household refrigeration cycles, the condenser outlet defines directly the refrigerant state at the capillary tube inlet. Due to unsteady operation conditions the refrigerant state can change from subcooled liquid to saturated liquid with partially a vapor phase at the capillary tube inlet. The refrigerant flow inside the capillary tube is either adiabatic or non-adiabatic (by utilizing internal heat exchange). In both cases the refrigerants state changes during the expansion with an increase of vapor quality towards the capillary tube outlet. A variable vapor quality at the capillary tube inlet causes different flow patterns, especially at the capillary tube outlet. These flow patterns change periodically depending on the refrigerant state at the capillary tube inlet. Associated with the periodical changing flow patterns the occurrence of noise effects with the same periodicity and remarkable variations of the sound pressure level can be observed at the capillary tube outlet. Â This paper presents the experimental investigations on the simultaneous occurrence of refrigerant flow patterns and corresponding noise effects at the outlet of a capillary tube installed in a refrigeration test cycle. The discussion of the experimental results leads to an explanation of causal relation between distinguishable flow patterns and corresponding noise effects.