Computational Fluid Dynamics Study of an Atmospheric Water Generator
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The goal of this project is to use Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to study an Atmospheric Water Generator (AWG) to aid the development of an optimal AWG configuration. The AWG utilizes a thermoelectric cooler (or Peltier) which is a device that when powered, transfers heat from one surface of the device to the other. This results in a very hot side and a very cold side. Under the right atmospheric conditions (dry bulb temperature and humidity), the cooling of the Peltier device allows humid air to be converted into moisture. CFD is utilized to analyze the heat exchange between all components of an AWG assembly. The assembly consists of a condensation plate, a Peltier device beneath the condensation plate, a single heat sink to draw heat away from the Peltier, and a fan to cool the heat sink. A CAD model of the water generator is created, and flow simulation is conducted on the AWG assembly. CFD is used to solve for the surface temperature of the condensation plate, heat dissipation from the thermoelectric cooler to the heat sink, and the rate of cooling that the fan provides to the heat sink. Currently, a single AWG assembly is being analyzed using CFD. Future progression of the study will be to model a larger system consisting of multiple AWG units to study the most effective method of cooling all the heat sinks so as optimize the efficiency of the Peltier.