Zess Industries is a US Veteran owned company that provides highly effective micro-channel heat exchangers for high temperature applications. Highly effective recuperators are essential to improving the efficiency of micro-turbines and SOFC’s used in power generation, transportation, and aerospace.
Under funding from the federal Department of Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) the founder of Zess Industries, in cooperation with US National Laboratories, developed patented manufacturing methods and applications in the field of micro-channel technology.
Efficiency Through Micro-Channel Technology
High temperature, micro-channel heat exchangers are becoming more and more important as efficiency requirements increase and advances in high temperature materials allows for higher system operating temperatures. Many critical thermal issues become problems best solved by Zess Industries’ affordable, micro-channel heat exchangers.
Micro-channel heat exchangers are heat exchangers in which fluid flows in lateral confinements with typical dimensions below 1 mm. As the Reynolds Number is proportional to hydraulic diameter, fluid flow in channels of small hydraulic diameter will predominantly be laminar in character. Thus, the heat transfer coefficient (h) is inversely proportional to the hydraulic diameter (De) of the flow channels.
h = (Nu*k)/De
Nu Nusselt Number
k Fluid Thermal Conductivity
As the effective diameter De of the flow channels becomes smaller, the heat transfer coefficient becomes larger. With hydraulic diameters on the order of tens or hundreds of micrometres, an extremely high heat transfer coefficient results. Closer approach temperatures are obtained as a result of the exceptionally high surface areas and heat transfer coefficients inherent to Zess Industries’ micro-channel proprietary design.
Experienced Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing
Recuperators for small turbines and SOFC’s must have the following attributes:
- High effectiveness, with limited pressure drops through the recuperator, in order to offer the performance necessary to reduce the specific fuel consumption of the engine.
- Structurally robust and capable of long-term operation under high temperature, cyclic operation.
Able to be manufactured at a cost point that will allow the recuperator to be offered at a commercially attractive price.
- For aerospace and transportation, small size (volume) and low weight are required.
The experienced engineering team at Zess Industries works closely with their customers to design the optimum recuperator for the customer’s system. The detailed design of the recuperator may require an iterative process where designs/specifications go backwards and forwards between our recuperator design team and our customer’s component designers (turbines, compressors etc.) to reach a balance where each design team can achieve the required performance from their respective components.
Zess Industries has recently transitioned to using an innovative 3D Metal and Ceramic Screen Printing process for precision, high volume, low cost manufacturing. 3D solid state screen printing developed by Fraunhofer-Institute for Manufacturing and Advanced Materials www.ifam.fraunhofer.de provides an alternative to extractive manufacturing methods. https://www.scientific.net/MSF.941.2148