HOW IT WORKS
The Aquatherm Technology
How it Works - Concept
Every Kilowatt of energy that is used in a laundry is eventually lost to the drain or to the atmosphere and must be replaced with ‘new energy’. A substantial proportion of the lost energy can be recovered and used again, reducing new energy consumed.
Water has become an expensive resource too, and with climate change and population growth, the pressure is on to reduce Industrial consumption to a minimum.
Aquatherm is a highly efficient heat recovery system that can extract 60% to 90% of the energy contained in laundry waste water (depending on temperatures and flows). The recovered energy is used to preheat incoming cold process water, reducing the need for steam in the washing process to a small fraction of the previous demand. As a by-product of this process, hot rinsing reduces the level of moisture retained after extraction. With a drier load heated all through, drying times are reduced, increasing output and saving energy at the same time.
In this site we describe the methods and systems that Aquatherm has developed over nearly 4 decades to reduce the use of gas, oil, coal, electricity, water, chemicals and time in laundries . By employing these methods correctly, a laundry business will run more efficiently, use less energy and have a smaller carbon footprint.
If you prevent energy and water from leaving the building, there is no need to replace it - it’s as simple as that.
Between 25 and 40% of the energy used by most laundries is used for heating water for washing. All of this energy goes to waste.
Aquatherm recovers 60% - 90% of this waste energy and recycles back into the process reducing the laundry’s total energy bill by an average of 25%.
How it Works - Technical
One of the most efficient ways of transferring heat from one liquid to another, without any contact between the two, is by using a ‘Shell and Tube’ heat exchanger. This type of heat exchanger consists of a shell (a large tube) with a series of small tubes inside it. Hot water flows through the tubes and cold water through the shell, transferring up to 90% of the energy from one to the other in minutes.
If it was that simple, of course most laundries would have installed such a system decades ago. However, laundry water consists of a cocktail of chemicals, dirt, lint and fibre that causes traditional heat exchangers to block very quickly, or need sophisticated filtration, or constant maintenance.
Up to 1200 metres (3/4 mile) of this tube carries the waste water through the exchanger, while the fresh water flows around the outside of every tube in perfect counter flow.
When planning to reduce water and energy costs, there are many options to choose from to achieve the targeted result. As every laundry is different, finding the optimum solution for each one can be a complex and daunting task.
Aquatherm’s Simulator makes it possible to make a clear choice based on what makes the most financial sense out of the many options available.
The simulator examines 10 key areas:
- Water Supply
- Water Disposal
- Energy for Washing
- Energy for drying and finishing
- Linen replacement
- kWh per kg consumption
- CO2 emissions
- Return on Investment
Having entered the data provided or measured , the results are calculated. This is just the start.
These results are then compared with management figures, and in the great majority of cases there is a difference between the 'bottom up' calculation and reality. Having identified any discrepancies, input data is adjusted to make sure that 'projected' and 'actual' figures match.
At this point the simulator data will be close to reality and a series of ‘What If?’ calculations can then be carried out to to determine the optimum solution.
This is a free service, and provides a clear and accurate analysis that can be trusted to reflect the results which will be experienced when the chosen solution is in operation.
At the heart of Aquatherm is a unique stainless steel tube, formed internally and externally into a double helix.
The waste water inside the tubes is kept in a state of high turbulence, which stops lint and dirt from sticking and increases heat transfer by 75% compared with plain tube. This combination ensures the extraordinary transfer of heat that is achieved in all Aquatherm systems, regardless of capacity.
Aquatherm’s unique design uses a combination of methods to achieve a very high rate of heat recovery throughout its long working life, without the need for cleaning or maintenance. In order to keep the system compact, the exchanger is constructed in sections, linked with continuous tubular headers, with specially formed stainless steel tubes carrying the waste water, creating a controlled velocity and high degree of turbulence . The system can deal with waste water from any number and type of washing machines.
How it Works - Installation
The Aquatherm Micro is a fully packaged water and energy system, complete with fresh and waste water buffer tanks, control panel and connections to level detection sensors, fresh and waste water flow valves, temperature sensors and waste water pumps, all pre-wired and tested. Floor space requirements are minimal and configurable - enabling even the smallest or most crowded of laundry buildings to take advantage of this technology.
When it comes to installation, the new Aquatherm Micro model is in a league of its own.
Installation is quick and inexpensive.
- Connect fresh water
- Install pump and waste pipe connections
- Fix level sensor to pit
- Plug in pump and level sensor
- Connect electricity and compressed air
- Ready to run!