Hydronic Systems: Cooling Tower Basics

SKU: RVI-11501Duration: 20 Minutes

This course has been created with the practical user of water based (hydronic) heating and cooling systems in mind. The goal is to introduce and understand one of the most basic elements in a hydronic cooling system: the cooling tower. Here we will convey the fundamentals of the means of heat rejection so that you can responsibly and confidently manage and operate buildings that utilize such systems. The objectives of this course are to understand open tower construction and operation; fluid cooler construction and operation; and to provide an overview of water treatment basics.

Course Details


Training Time: 20 minutes

Compatibility: Desktop, Tablet, Phone

Based on: Industry Standards and Best Practices

Languages: English

Learning Objectives

  • State the purpose of a cooling tower
  • Differentiate between an open and closed cooling tower
  • State the purpose of the fill in a cooling tower
  • Comprehend the purpose of chemical water treatment in cooling towers
  • Apply the results of conductivity readings

Key Questions

The following key questions are answered in this module:

What is hydronics?
Hydronics is a means of heating and cooling using a fluid as the heat transfer medium.

What is the difference between an open system and closed system?
An open system has some point in the system open to the atmosphere, while a closed system is not open to the atmosphere at any point; the fluid is never exposed to anything outside of the system itself.

What is the First Law of Thermodynamics?
The First Law states that energy cannot be created or destroyed; it can only be transferred or changed in form

What is the Second Law of Thermodynamics?
The Second Law says that as energy is transformed and transferred, more and more of it is wasted as heat.

What is conductivity?
Conductivity is an indicator of the number of suspended solids that are in the water.

Sample Video Transcript

Below is a transcript of the video sample provided for this module:

Indirect-contact, closed-circuit cooling towers contain two separate fluid circuits. The system integrated into the tower design is an external pumped circuit, in which water is exposed to the atmosphere as it cascades over a coil. The internal circuit is the hydronic system water which is circulating inside the coil. In operation, heat is transferred from the coil to the water flowing over the coil, and then, by heat and mass transfer, to the atmosphere. Because the internal hydronic system water never contacts the air, there is no opportunity for fouling of the piping system. Like open towers, closed towers come in both counterflow and cross-flow arrangements, and in forced- and induced-draft fan configurations. Spray pumps are integrated in the product to transport water from the lower collection basin to upper distribution spray nozzles. The internal coils can be constructed from several materials, but galvanized steel, stainless steel, and copper predominate.
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