Temperature-control systems gain technological edge

May 27, 2015

Whether driven by water, oil or air, new heating/cooling and temperature-control systems unveiled at NPE have added capabilities to optimize performance.

NPE developments in temperature control and process cooling machinery technologies emphasized better heating/cooling efficiencies, lower energy consumption, greater versatility and a smaller footprint.

More temperature-control units (TCUs) are embracing variable-speed motor drives to better match output and energy consumption to the job at hand, while microprocessor controls are becoming more versatile to deliver higher precision monitoring and adjustment, or connectivity.


Thermal Care Inc., Niles, Ill., introduced its new RAL series of economical temperature controllers. The company, which engineers, designs and manufactures industrial process cooling systems, cooling towers, chillers and temperature-control units, says the RAL series has a simplified controller that provides all basic production functions, which helps to reduce its price.

RAL comes standard with cast pump volume/heater tube/mixing assemblies, as well as high-flow pumps with leak-resistant silicon carbide seals and heaters sheathed with Incoloy high-performance alloy. The units are offered with 9 or 12 kW heating capacity utilizing a 0.75 to 7.5 horsepower pump.

The NQV line of portable chillers introduced by Thermal Care incorporates a new variable-speed compressor technology that allows users to adjust the capacity of the chiller to match its operating load.

Chiller temperature control is precise due to the speed control of the variable-frequency drive and an electronic expansion valve. Tailoring energy consumption to the actual energy demand of the unit by adjusting for part-load rather than full-load operation pares energy consumption. Chiller capacity changes occur without using hot gas bypass, running the compressor at full amperage or cycling the compressor.

The new unit features micro-channel condensers for minimized refrigerant charge and increased durability, and a low-voltage control to keep the control circuit free from AC interference. Other features include a 7-inch color touch screen and programmable logic controller that displays control, maintenance, troubleshooting and help screens.

Thermal Care also developed Connex, its new communication system that allows remote access, control and troubleshooting of all Thermal Care devices on the network. Controls of the equipment can be monitored and mirrored on any computer, tablet or cell phone by the system, which uses a simple Internet connection and readily available third-party software. The Connex system can alert customers of any system alarm instantly via email or text message.

Connex allows users to control the unit remotely and carry out diagnostics or troubleshooting before a technician is sent to the site. More than 100 devices can be connected to the Connex system at any one time. The system is ideal for processors running a lights-out operation.


Mokon, Buffalo, N.Y., which marks 60 years as a manufacturer of circulating liquid temperature-control systems, expanded its Duratherm MAX circulating water temperature-control system with a unit that delivers water as hot as 380 degrees Fahrenheit at system pressures up to 300 pounds per square inch (psi). Designed for use with restrictive processes and high-temperature water applications, the Duratherm MAX series self-generates the pressure required to produce high-temperature thermal fluid using typical municipal or plant water connections.

Duratherm MAX features a unique fan-cooled heat exchanger that cools process fluids safely and reliably while eliminating thermal shock, mineral buildup and flash to steam. The system uses a seal-less magnetic-drive turbine pump fitted with a stainless steel impeller. Welded connections are incorporated into the design to ensure leak-free operation at high pressures. A horizontal stainless steel heater vessel is designed and tested to meet American Society of Mechanical Engineers standards. The unit also features an air-cooled heat exchanger for rapid cooling and a solenoid cooling valve.

The Duratherm MAX unit is offered in four models, which vary by pump horsepower (1.5 to 5.5 horsepower), desired or required flow rate and pressure, and heating capacity. A microprocessor-based controller displays fluid set point and actual temperature for process control accuracy, using a dual liquid-crystal display. The company developed the industry's first water temperature-control system in 1955, says Robert Kennery, VP of sales and marketing and GM at Mokon.

Mokon redesigned its Full Range temperature-control system to reduce overall cabinet size and floor space requirements. The Full Range system integrates a Mokon circulating water system with an Iceman chiller to provide heating and chilling from a single, compact, self-supporting unit, says Kennery. It comes in standard heating capacities up to 96 kW, with pumping capacity up to 120 gallons per minute, chilling capacity up to 40 tons and an operating temperature range from minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.

Standard features of the Full Range system include stainless steel centrifugal pumps, brazed plate evaporator, National Electrical Manufacturers Association-rated electrical enclosure with safety disconnect switch and a microprocessor-based controller with LED readout. The system is suited to applications that require multi-zone control and installations where water supply or drains are not accessible.

Mokon also launched a line of outdoor air-cooled condensers designed to provide a cost-saving solution for process cooling by locating the condensing coil outdoors. This remote condenser option effectively uses outdoor ambient air temperature to cool the refrigerant in the chiller refrigeration loop. It also reduces indoor heating, ventilation and air conditioning loading and noise levels by moving the unit outdoors. Standard condenser coils satisfy chiller capacities up to 125 tons, says Kennery. Condensing coils are available in single- or multi-circuit designs and with multiple fans, if required.

Mokon also updated its website to provide a more comprehensive, interactive experience. The site features a new product wizard and a user rating system, as well as a complete customer center featuring comprehensive technical data, electronic product catalog, and application and industry information.


A premium version of the TW series TCU from Conair Group, Cranberry Township, Pa., is designed to deliver added pressure, increased flow and higher temperatures while operating up to 50 percent more

efficiently compared to the standard unit in the line. The TW-S (standard) and TW-V (valve) units are joined by the new TW-P (premium) model, which has a more efficient pump design, as well as an improved heat exchanger design­—five times more efficient than the previous models, says Steve Petrakis, VP of sales for Conair in the U.S. and Canada. Maximum temperatures of 300 degrees Fahrenheit can be generated, which compares to maximum temperatures of 250 degrees Fahrenheit with previous designs. The enhanced efficiency allows for the possibility that smaller TCUs can be used in certain applications. A TW-IV 400 TCU, featuring a magnetic coupled pump design, is in development for release in 2016.

Conair's EP2A line of portable air-cooled chillers with condenser fans is available with variable-frequency drive motors that speed up or slow down the fans to match process conditions. Precisely controlling fan speed provides accurate condenser head pressure with minimal energy consumption, says Petrakis. A fixed-speed fan would need to be switched on and off to match process conditions, an exercise that is energy intensive and can reduce the working life of the fan motor.


The new 3PR Intelligent Control System from Frigel North America Inc., East Dundee, Ill., adjusts its process cooling systems based on real-time data for optimal performance. Processors can monitor and adjust system parameters based on an ambient temperature that is presented on its new 7-inch full-color touch-screen interface.

The new controller improves the accuracy of Frigel's closed-loop process cooling systems and features an on-board memory that continuously stores key operating parameters, which in turn can be downloaded for analysis. Compared to previous designs, the interface is easier to use, which can quicken troubleshooting tasks, reducing downtime.


Regloplas Corp., St. Joseph, Mich., has expanded its lineup of pressurized-water TCUs with the introduction of the P200MD model. The model features dual TCUs and offers capabilities similar to the P200M single-TCU design, including the ability to heat water up to 392 degrees Fahrenheit and pump capacity of up to 26 gallons per minute at a maximum pump pressure of 87 psi.

Designed for use with injection molds, extruders and mixers, the P200MD features Regloplas' patented SK cooling system and the company's Energy Storage Battery technology that optimizes energy balance and consumption. The TCU helps reduce cycle times, yields better filling of the cavity, minimizes weld lines and improves part surfaces, the company says.



The Sentra line of water-temperature controllers from Advantage Engineering Inc., Greenwood, Ind., features a new Temptender full-color touch-screen microprocessor control, which replaces the company's HE control. Advantage offers the Sentra in the VE series, LE series and 300F series. Features of the new controller include a readout of heating and cooling, flow rate, pump-seal cooling and a start-up venting sequence (which is user adjustable).

The Temptender features a 5-inch display that includes more than 15 screens for process setup, operation and monitoring, says Jon Gunderson, VP of sales and marketing. The user interface presents machine status and diagnostic information in an easy-to-understand format.

The Sentra system is designed to preheat process water to the desired operating temperature by engaging the electrical immersion heater of the unit, recirculating the water in the system. Water-cooled Sentra modules typically feature a heater ranging from 10 to 34 kW, a pump sized from 0.75 to 7.5 horsepower and use of Advantage's AVT modulating solenoid valve or its PVT solenoid valve, says Gunderson.



Dynisco, Franklin, Mass., launched two new temperature controllers for use with single- and twin-screw extruders. The 1496 (1/16 DIN) and 1498 (1/8 DIN) series temperature controllers feature three default parameter settings for heat only, heat/cool operation and indicator only—which make the units flexible enough for extrusion, according to the company.

The controllers are offered with multiple output configurations. They can be configured with up to three user-selected process alarms and are designed to accept a full range of thermocouple inputs as well as three-wire resistance temperature detector inputs. The controllers can be configured for heat-only control in die and adapter zones or for control of both heating and cooling barrel zones.


Universal Dynamics Inc., Woodbridge, Va., now offers DigitempEvo, a new water-cooled chiller designed specifically for injection and blow molding machines. The unit is offered in five models, available in single- or dual-circuit versions. The DigitempEvo thermorefrigerator system comes from Aquatech, a unit of Piovan SpA. Piovan is the parent company of Una-Dyn, which it acquired in 2008. The move marks a continued effort by Una-Dyn to adapt technology from its parent firm (see PMM April 2015, pg. 9).

DigitempEvo supplies water at a specific temperature, pressure and flow rate, performing the dual function of heating and cooling the process circuit, with a working range from 23 degrees Fahrenheit to 190 degrees Fahrenheit per circuit, according to the company.

The chiller utilizes Aquatech's digital scroll compressor to ensure performance while maintaining low energy consumption when compared with competing designs. According to Una-Dyn, it delivers more precise temperature control with no fluctuations.  To conserve energy, the compressor's output is scalable, so that it can perform at between 10 percent and 100 percent capacity, depending on the needs of the application.

The system can provide energy savings of 30 to 50 percent compared to equivalent models on the market. Other standard features include compact design and the use of an electronic expansion valve, one pump per circuit and the refrigerant gas R410A.




Wittmann Battenfeld Inc., Torrington, Conn., has expanded its Tempro line of compact temperature controllers with the new Tempro primus C120 and Tempro basic C120. The units feature direct cooling across the entire range of configuration options in terms of heating capacity, pump displacement and cooling performance. The Tempro line has a choice of equipment packages in terms of pumps and heating and cooling capacity.

The Tempro basic C120 handles flow up to 53 gallons per minute and comes with additional heating capacities of 24 or 26 kilowatts. Pump displacement rates range from 53 to 74 gallons per minute.

Mikell Knights, senior correspondent

[email protected]


Advantage Engineering Inc., 317-887-0729, www.advantageengineering.comAEC, 847-273-7700, www.aecinternet.comConair Group, 724-584-5500, www.conairgroup.comDynisco,508-541-9400, www.dynisco.comEcoChillers Inc., 956-284-0237, www.ecochillers.comFrigel North America Inc., 847-540-0160, www.frigel.comMokon, 716-876-9951, www.mokon.comRegloplas Corp., 269-428-1100, www.regloplasusa.comThermal Care Inc., 847-966-2260, www.thermalcare.comUniversal Dynamics Inc., 703-490-7000, http://unadyn.piovan.comWittmann Battenfeld Inc., 860-496-9603, www.wittmann-group.com