1 Conversation

Condensers are used to remove heat from and condense fluids. They can be found in refrigerators and as part of a steam cycle used for electricity production.

Basic principle of Heat Transfer

Where two adjacent objects or substances are at different temperatures there will be a net transfer of heat from the hotter to the colder object/substance. The rate of heat transfered depends on the objects/substances involved and the temperature difference between them. Higher rates of transfer are caused by bigger temperature differences.

Fridges and Freezers - under construction

Fridges and freezers use fluids with very low melting points to transfer heat from the inside to the outside to maintain the low temperature required inside.

Industrial Condensers

Some industrial condensers use sea water to cool and condense steam as part of a steam cycle. In the condensers, sea water (at around 7°C) is pumped through lots of small tubes. The steam passes over the tubes and transfers some of its heat to the sea water. The steam condenses on the tubes and forms water droplets. The sea water is never in contact with the steam - the heat transfer is done through the pipes. The sea water leaves the condenser a few degrees higher than it entered and the steam leaves as water.

Bookmark on your Personal Space

Conversations About This Entry



Infinite Improbability Drive

Infinite Improbability Drive

Read a random Edited Entry

Written and Edited by


h2g2 is created by h2g2's users, who are members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the Not Panicking Ltd. Unlike Edited Entries, Entries have not been checked by an Editor. If you consider any Entry to be in breach of the site's House Rules, please register a complaint. For any other comments, please visit the Feedback page.

Write an Entry

"The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a wholly remarkable book. It has been compiled and recompiled many times and under many different editorships. It contains contributions from countless numbers of travellers and researchers."

Write an entry
Read more