Forward Conduction Laser Welding Drops Manufacturing Costs of Microchannel Heat Exchangers
Poly Heat Exchanger’s innovative welding process effectively welds 25-micron thick low density polyethylene sheets into microchannel heat exchangers. They can be effective with water-to-water or air-to-air energy transfers. Other materials can be used for light-weight fluid to gas transfer and for higher temperatures and pressures.
The process welds layers together. The sheets are then inflated or expanded into shape. While the current sheets are made of polyethylene, the process can work on polymers, metals, or polymer-ceramic precursors.
Exceptional efficiency comes from the weld configuration that can send the fluids zig-zagging through the exchanger. Flow can be created parallel, cross-low, or counter-flow.
Points can be welded with a laser or even with an ink jet printer using a special quality of glue.
With scale, the cost of heat exchanger production using this method can drop 50% or more!
- heat recovery
- industrial processes
- conventional power plants
Possible uses include:
- fuel cells
- concentrated solar power
- solar hot water
- compressed air energy storage
- wind turbines
- solar water pasteurization— which has the potential to save the lives of thousands of children a day
Within the renewable energy field, applications include: