What Is A Cooling Tower and How Does It Work?

A cooling tower is responsible for cooling down water after it becomes overheated by industrial equipment and processes. The system creates a unique kind of heat exchange that lowers the temperature of hot water when air and water come into contact with one another. During the process, small amounts of water evaporate work to lower the temperature of the water that is circulated through the cooling tower.

Cooling towers receive hot water (which is heated through different industrial processes). Then, the tower cools down the water so that it leaves the cooling tower in a cooled state and can recirculate through the industrial process.

Cooling towers are commonly used to remove heat from chillers. Air cooled chillers tend to be less effective when compared to water cooled chillers. HVAC systems have their own cooling tower applications, although stand-alone cooling towers are typically much larger and are used to remove heat in more industrial settings such as petroleum refineries, natural gas processing plants, and other industrial facilities.

There are different types of cooling towers, including:

  • Crossflow cooling towers
  • Counterflow cooling towers
  • Natural draft and fan assisted natural draft cooling towers
  • Forced draft and induced draft cooling towers
  • Factory assembled cooling towers
  • Field-erected towers

How Do Cooling Towers Work?

Now that you have a general understanding of why businesses rely on cooling towers, let’s take a closer look at how they function. Cooling towers are designed to lower water temperatures by combining air and water.

In many cases, hot water is generated through the use of industrial processes such as air conditioning condensers. Hot water is directed to the cooling tower through pipes, and then pumped back out for re-use via pipes. There are nozzles inside of the cooling tower that spray water onto the “fill media.” This reduces the flow of water and allows the maximum amount of water surface area to be exposed. This creates the best air-water contact. The air is driven from an electric motor or “cooling tower fan.”

As air and water come together, some of the water naturally evaporates and this produces a cooling effect. Cold water is then pumped back into the equipment or original process. This process repeats over and over again so that the equipment or condensers do not overheat.

What is Evaporative Cooling?

Evaporative cooling is a process in which warm water created by some type of an industrial process is funneled to the top of the cooling tower where the water distribution system is located. Cooling tower nozzles are responsible for redistributing the water to the wet deck. Simultaneously, air is pulled in through the air-inlet louvers, which causes water to evaporate. The process of evaporation causes heat to be extracted from the water. Hot air naturally rises, leaving behind cool water.

What Happens If Your Cooling Tower Stops Working?

If a cooling tower stops working due to an unplanned power outage or planned maintenance, it can shut down your entire manufacturing process – and that’s not good for your bottom line. Luckily, you can rent cooling towers that are designed to be quickly moved on-site as needed so you can keep your business going, no matter what.

Rent Cooling Towers from Cooling Power

Why worry about the maintenance and storage of cooling towers when you don’t have to? Rent cooling towers from Cooling Power and enjoy peace of mind that you are getting a high-quality tower that is reliable when you need it most. Our towers are designed to be moved onsite during a power outage or maintenance repairs, that way you can keep your business up and running no matter what. Learn more