From Pine View Farm

Cooling Towers 6

I have mentioned that my current project involves Industrial Strength Cooling Towers.

Here’s one:

cooling tower

(Aside) Ain’t that the forklift from hell?



  1. Opie

    March 29, 2007 at 10:35 pm

    When you climb inside one of those and forget to latch the door, and the fan turns on, the door slams really hard and scares you to death. I have scientifically proven this.

    (BTW, I did it when the tower was still dry.)

  2. Karen

    March 30, 2007 at 8:15 am

    What, may I ask, is the purpose for these things? Any why would anyone want to get inside one, dry or not? I like the forklift too.

  3. Frank

    March 30, 2007 at 6:44 pm

    They are like the air conditioner compressor located next to your house, but much bigger. They remove heat from the coolant.

    Big air conditioners need big compressors.

    In water-based cooling systems, the hot water comes in the top of the cooling tower, flows down a bundle of specially formed plastic sheets in the sides, and transfers heat to the air. A single unit can remove as much as 20 degrees of heat from the cooling water.

    The fans are mounted at the top in this model. They suck air in through the sides to cool the water as it flows over the “fill bundle.”

    As many as eight units can be linked together to work as one.

    The one in the picture is 14-feet wide, with a 13 and 1/2 foot fan mounted in the roof.

    People have to go inside to lubricate the fan motor and do other maintenance.

    Opie, what the heck does your employer have to do with cooling towers? They don’t punch a time-clock, do they?

  4. Opie

    March 30, 2007 at 10:30 pm

    My cooling tower experiences are from my Johnson Controls days. I used to program automated control systems for cooling towers, and lots of other things.

    Why get in one? Well, in the early phases of installation, you want to make sure the fan is rotating in the right direction. If the electrician gets confused on his three-phase wiring, the fan turns the wrong way and the cooling tower becomes an expensive and not-that-artistic water fountain. Other reasons include adjusting vibration sensors, (if a fan gets out of balance it can shake the cooling tower’s joints loose,) and checking basin level sensors and so forth. In some designs, the basins even have heaters to prevent freeze-up.

    Most tower fans now have variable speed drives. You calculate a target temperature for your tower to cool the water down to, and then you program the system to slow the fan down to the lowest speed necessary to achieve that temperature. This saves electricity.

  5. Karen

    March 31, 2007 at 8:43 am

    Sounds like a cooling tower is a lot like a swamp cooler, that’s used here in places, instead of the central air. But, it’s so dry here in the summer, we can use it & be just fine. We don’t even bother with the a/c in the summer, upstairs we use a portable swamp cooler in our bedroom at night.

  6. Connor Bell

    August 11, 2010 at 3:17 am

    Air Conditioners are really necessary if you have allergic rhinitis and some other respiratory conditions :