Calorimeter Lab Tour
The Federal Clean Air Act has mandated changes in engine operations that will require up to 20% of IEA’s radiator systems to directly cool searing turbocharged inlet air, rather than use an intermediate cooler with water. Previously, cooling temperatures rarely exceeded 225º F; the new standards drive them up as high as 550º F.
Achieving performance at this level requires new product concepts, new materials and distinct fin designs, all of which IEA is prepared to bring to market.
To ensure every new product performs at maximum efficiency, IEA has invested in an industry leading test facility; it’s Calorimeter Laboratory. This computer controlled, high precision tool quantifies within a 97% accuracy range the ability of a radiator design to dissipate heat, ensuring that every radiator IEA produces is “right-sized”; not too small, but also not too big.
An undersized radiator can allow engines to overheat, producing less-than-required power. But a too-large system can be both overpriced and more expensive-than-necessary to operate. The value of IEA’s engineering expertise lies in the ability to fit the cooling capacity precisely to the cooling demands.
The Calorimeter Design:
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- Insulated room 12’ wide x12’ high x 28’ long.
- 36-ton air conditioner and heater maintain the internal temperature from 50°F to 120°F within .2°F., allowing readings to stabilize quickly, contributing to the system high accuracy.
- Chamber temperature adjustable so test air has standard density of .075 lbs / ft3 to minimize data adjustments.
- Permits testing with .075 /bs/ft3 air regardless of weather conditions.
- The wind tunnel simulates an engine’s cooling fan, pushing a carefully controlled air stream through the test sample.
- Variable speed 20-hp squirrel cage blower produces up to 9,600 acfm at 10 inches of water.
- Air flows through 4 ASHRE nozzles into straighteners and then into the test core.
- Measurements are accurate from 250 to 9,600 acfm.
- Air temperature is measured before and after the specimen.
- Air pressure drop across the test specimen is measured within .02 inches of water
- The primary loop, containing electric heaters controlled with an scr and pid loop, serves as a reservoir for the heated test fluids, either water or anti-freeze.
- The fluid required for individual tests is drawn from the primary loop
- The flow rate is controlled by two variable speed pumps
- Controlling heat and flow rate independently eliminates the affect flow rate has on temperature stability, increasing the accuracy and reliability of the test results.
- Can produce 65 lbs per minute of air at 50 psi
- SCR-controlled electric heaters raise the temperature to 500°F, required for accurate measurement of heat transfer and internal pressure drop.