Air Flow Wind Tunnel

The Air Flow Wind Tunnel was designed for flexible configuration of HVAC system experiments.  The facility consists of an air loop with supply and return fans controlled by variable speed drives and a test section with temperature control maintained by cooling and reheat coils.  Refrigerant (water/water-glycol solution) is pumped to the coils from two, five hundred gallon, temperature controlled tanks.  A 2.5 tons (9 kW) water-cooled chiller provides the refrigeration capacity in a wide range of temperature from -25°F to +130°F (-32 to 55°C). An air flow measurement station accommodates a range of elliptical flow nozzles ranging from one to ten inches in diameter. The test section is constructed of ½ inch clear acrylic panels to allow viewing of the velocity streamlines from any direction.

The air flow wind tunnel is used for experimental heat transfer measurements under dry-, wet-, and frosting operating conditions. The facility allows simulating the defrosting cycles typical of air-source heat pump systems. The set up is currently used for heat transfer tests on microchannel heat exchangers.