Design of centrifugal compressors for heat pump systems

Andrea Meroni*, Benjamin Zühlsdorf, Brian Elmegaard, Fredrik Haglind

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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This work presents a mean-line model of a centrifugal compressor and a method for a coupled optimization with a heat pump system. The compressor model was validated with five test cases from the open literature including the working fluids: air, refrigerant R-134a and carbon dioxide. Afterwards, the compressor model was coupled and optimized with that of a heat pump cycle supplying steam at 150 °C. Two cycle configurations were considered: an open-loop system using steam, and a closed-loop system with five other working fluid candidates. The compressor was designed using a multi-objective optimization algorithm, which seeks to maximize simultaneously the cycle coefficient of performance and the supplied heat flow rate. The method employed in this work considers the possible trade-offs regarding cycle and compressor design criteria, and can be used to identify cost-effective solutions for the next generation of heat pumps. The obtained results suggest that a two-stage compressor using steam yields the highest values of coefficient of performance and heat supply, and at the same time requires a more challenging compressor design.
Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied Energy
Pages (from-to)139-156
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Turbocompressor
  • Validation
  • Preliminary design
  • Refrigerant
  • High-temperature heat pump
  • 2010 MSC: 00-01 99-00


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