Just like how the human body needs the heart to pump blood to its parts, a mechanical cooling system also needs the compressor to supply gaseous refrigerant from the evaporator to the condenser to produce an appropriate temperature. A compressor serves as the heart of all mechanically-driven cooling equipment which consists of 2 major components: the compressing mechanism and the power source. Each plays a unique role in the overall cooling process.
5 Types of Compressor and Their Uses
- Reciprocating Compressor
Also called the single-acting piston compressor, a reciprocating compressor moves back and forth like the movement of a piston. It is used mainly for applications that require extremely high cooling capacity. Reciprocating compressors use pistons which work similar to an internal combustion engine. These pistons move back and forth, up and down inside cylinders to pull and compress the refrigerant gas.
- Rotary-vane Compressor
This type of compressor comprises a cylindrical casing with two openings (suction and discharge) and a rotor placed eccentrically on the casing. Rotary-vane compressors are best for low capacity residential applications such as for air conditioners, fridge, and freezers. With twin rotors revolving in the opposite directions, rotary compressors become more efficient to use in a wider variety of applications.
- Scroll Compressors
If you notice, scroll compressors are commonly used in commercial and residential air conditioning systems and heat pumps. They use two scrolls with one moving and the other in a fixed position. Their capacity varies from 2 to 100 KW. These compressors can be very highly efficient at various working conditions.
- Screw Compressors
Screw compressors perform its job through its mechanism called rotors (two intermeshing screws). These compressors need an abundant amount of lubrication as fluid is required to keep the rotors from revolving. When there are enough lubrication and consequent cooling of the oil, the results ensure higher compression ratios.
- Centrifugal Compressors
This type of compressor is also known as radial or turbo compressor which is widely used in high/large capacity refrigerating systems. It features a cast iron casing, aluminum alloy impeller and a steel tube. Centrifugal compressors are controlled by an inverter which features a magnetic levitation without using vibrations or oil. It is highly efficient. However, it can be very expensive.
Find out more interesting facts and information about compressors and your HVAC system from the experts at Res Air Conditioning. Give us a call or message us for an appointment today!