Volume 29: Closing Carbon Cycles – A Transformation Process Involving Technology, Economy, and Society: Part IV

A thermoacoustic refrigerator with a compact thermal buffer tube Tze Yeung Cho, Jingyuan Xu, Ercang Luo, Simone Hochgreb



The development of thermoacoustic refrigeration technology has been held back by low power density and high required temperatures. The present work proposes and simulates a compact, multi-stage loop thermoacoustic refrigeration system with integrated stages connected by a short thermal buffer tube at the heating-cooling section interface. This arrangement improves power density and reduces friction losses. Designed to operate at a cooling temperature between 200 and 290 K, and powered by low-grade heat input at around 450 to 600 K at 2.0 MPa mean pressure and 293 K ambient temperature, the system can achieve relatively high power density and low onset temperature. Simulation results show a four-stage system can produce a maximum cooling power output of around 5 to 10 kW with an overall axial length of less than 12 m. The system also requires a low onset temperature difference at approximately 35 K between heat input and ambient for the system to sustain limit cycle oscillations.

Keywords thermoacoustic, refrigeration, engine, waste heat, compact

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