Cooling a living space using chilled water is not new. Visit a high-rise hotel room in summer and notice how it is cooled. Chances are that cool air enters from a vent located in the wall or ceiling. Behind the vent is a heat exchanger with chilled water flowing into it. The water absorbs the heat from room air and carries it back to a chiller that extracts the heat and rejects it outside the building. After being re-cooled, the water returns back to the room - completing the cooling cycle.
With advances in technology, hydronic cooling is no longer limited to high-rises and other large commercial buildings. Improvements in chilled-water generators, distribution equipment and piping have made hydronic cooling practical for residential and lighter commercial buildings. These systems offer advantages over traditional forms of cooling, including reduced electrical energy usage, simple zoning, thermal storage and less invasive installation.
This issue of idronics explores several methods of hydronic cooling using currently available products and highlights the benefits and performance advantages of these systems. We hope you enjoy it and encourage you to send us any feedback about idronics by e-mailing us.