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A solid sorption gas-fired heat pump was designed and developed for residential space heating and cooling applications. The solid sorption technology uses natural gas as the energy source for compressing and circulating the refrigerant in the air-conditioning system. The system adopts a “thermal” compressor, composed of two cylinders (beds) filled with carbon particles, and employs ammonia as a refrigerant. The compressor operates based on a “thermal wave” concept for improved compression efficiency. A 2-ton (7 kW) solid sorption heat pump system prototype was built and tested. The system delivered 22,871 Btu/h (6.7 kW) of cooling at 95°F (35°C). The seasonal cooling coefficient of performance (COP) was calculated at 0.36. The system was tested in heating mode at 53°F (11.6°C) outdoor temperature and achieved COP of 1.1 and 1.15 at high-fire and low-fire operations, respectively. The predicted heating seasonal COP was 0.95. A 3-ton (10.5 kW) gas-engine-driven technology was tested to establish a baseline for comparison. The engine-driven system achieved seasonal COP of 1.17 and 1.1 for cooling and heating operations, respectively.

Units: Dual

Citation: ASHRAE Transactions, vol. 109, pt. 1