Air-to-Air vs. Air-to-Water Heat Exchangers: Which Are Better?

The waste heat that electronics give off can damage circuits and other components. In many cases, though, controlling that heat doesn’t necessarily require chilling the entire enclosure, which means air conditioners and compressed air coolers are often unnecessary. A better alternative is to keep the air cool by dissipating the heat emanating from the circuits. This can be achieved with Noren’s air-to-air and air-to-water heat exchangers, both of which can effectively replace conventional air conditioning units. Deciding which is better depends on the unique needs of each application, which Noren helps determine through comprehensive design and analysis for every client.

Air-to-Air (Ambient Cooling Units)

If electronic components could operate in open air, then they wouldn’t need to be actively cooled. With that thought in mind, air-to-air ambient cooling units dissipate electronic waste heat and replace it with cooled air in a continuous closed-loop system. Using aluminum sheets (conduction) or heat pipes (convection), air-to-air heat exchangers transfer heat from near the electronics to another area of the unit, recirculating the cooled air back to the area near the components. Because the system is a closed loop, air-to-air coolers prevent contaminated air entering the cabinet from outside.

Air-to-Water (Below Ambient Cooling Units)

When electronic enclosures need to be cooled to lower-than-ambient air temperature, Noren’s below ambient cooling units can do so using an average of only a gallon of water per unit. Innovative phase-change technology allows the heat exchangers to transfer heat without raising the temperature. The water absorbs heat from the electronics as it’s vaporized, then the gas is transferred to another area of the unit, where it is condensed back into cooler water and recirculated back near the components. The temperature of the water will determine to what degree the air is cooled, so there’s no need for external air conditioning or compressed air equipment.

Find the Best HX Technology for Your Needs

Air-to-air and air-to-water heat exchangers utilize green technology that can provide significant advantages for companies in all industries. To find out which heat exchanger technology is best for a specific application, call Noren Thermal, Inc. at 650-322-9500, or toll-free at 866-936-6736. Located in Menlo Park, CA, Noren proudly produces all of our products in the United States and delivers them to clients nationwide.