Modeling and optimal control of an energy-efficient hybrid solar air conditioning system

Publisher:
Elsevier BV
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
AUTOMATION IN CONSTRUCTION, 2015, 49 (Part B), pp. 262 - 270
Issue Date:
2015-01
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The paper addresses the modeling and optimal control problem of a new hybrid solar-assisted air conditioning system developed for performance enhancement and energy efficiency improvement. To regulate the mass flow rate of the refrigerant vapor passing through a water storage tank for increasing the refrigerant's sub-cooling process at partial loads, we propose a new discharge bypass line together with an inline solenoid valve, installed after the compressor. In addition, to control the air flow rate, a variable speed drive is coupled with the condenser fan. For the control purpose, a lumped parameter model is first developed to describe the system dynamics in an explicit input–output relationship; then, a linear optimal control scheme is applied for the system's multivariable control. The system has been fully-instrumented to examine its performance under different operation conditions. The system model is then validated by extensive experimental tests. Based on the obtained dynamic model, an optimal controller is designed to minimize a quadratic cost function. Numerical algorithms, implemented in a simulation tool, are then employed to predict the energy performance of the system under transient loads. The experimental results obtained from implementation with PLC demonstrate that the newly-developed system can deliver higher system efficiency owing to amelioration of the refrigeration effect in the direct expansion evaporator and adjustment of its air flow rate. The development is thus promising for improvement of energy efficiency, enhancement of the system performance while fulfilling the cooling demand.
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