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Evaluation of the thermal environment in large manufacturing plants

Evaluation of the thermal environment in large manufacturing plants

Frystacki, Thomas (2016) Evaluation of the thermal environment in large manufacturing plants. PhD thesis, University of Greenwich.

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Abstract

Old “mega-factories” use significant amounts of energy to maintain an optimal production and working environment despite the mild climate of the United Kingdom. The increasing cost of energy and environmental problems put industries under pressure to reduce their energy consumption and hence the carbon footprint.

A case study was carried out at an existing large manufacturing plant, to develop a method to study thermal performance of large industrial buildings through physical measurements and numerical simulations, to profile the thermal characteristics of such a factory. Plant environment data was logged and analysed, by various systems and different techniques, to understand thermal environment that also influenced the energy usage. In addition to experimental measurements, the building including all internal components was modelled using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to observe temperature distribution and air circulation. A validation process against collected data from multifarious sources proved the model reliability within a desired accuracy. All applied techniques of evaluating the thermal environment within the factory, experimental and simulated, were compared and outcomes suggest high potential of all utilised systems. Especially a fixed sensor system showed the advantage of continuous live sampled data that could be of instant use for temperature and humidity monitoring when required. Low priced systems such as mobile data collection systems had the advantage of detailed data acquisition at specific locations. In addition to other data presentation innovative tools such as indoor temperature distribution maps helped to evaluate the thermal environment and allowed the quantitative validation of a simulation model. A CFD model of the observed manufacturing plant showed great potential within momentary computational limitations, but even greater potential for future applications.

All these methods were engineered and tested to work towards the ultimate project aim of creating a methodology to evaluate the thermal characteristics of an industrial live environment within a large scale manufacturing plant. However, a scientific study within such a large, obsolete and complex live environment showed significant difficulties which set this project apart from investigations within smaller facilities. All applied methodologies were discussed to build new knowledge about such a task and its advantages for researchers, engineers and future projects.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Thermal performance; factory environment; manufacturing plants; thermal environment; simulation models;
Subjects: T Technology > TD Environmental technology. Sanitary engineering
T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science
Faculty of Engineering & Science > Department of Engineering Science
Last Modified: 09 Apr 2019 10:14
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/23496

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