Water-cooled condensers are of many different types as shown in Figure 3.17. The most common condensers are generally shell and tube type heat exchangers with refrigerant flow through the shell and water (as coolant) flow through the tubes (SST type in Figure 3.17). The lower portion of the shell acts as a liquid receiver. These condensers are widely used in large heat capacity refrigerating and chilling applications. If a water-cooled condenser is used, the following criteria must be examined:
• requirement of cooling water for heat rejection,
• utilization of a cooling tower if inexpensive cooling water is available,
• requirement of auxiliary pumps and piping for recirculating cooling water,
• requirement of water treatment in water recirculation systems,
• space requirements,
• maintenance and service situations, and
• provision of freeze protection substances and tools for winter operation.
In general, water-cooled condensers are used with cooling towers or ground water (well. lake, river, etc.).