SunEarth Inc

Tube-In-Shell Heat Exchangers


Tube-in-shell (Tube) heat exchangers are constructed entirely from 316 L stainless steel to offer extreme durability and protection from corrosion in DHW applications. The compact design of these units allows for more surface area to be packed in a shorter length, making them an ideal candidate for natural convection sidearm designs. Heat transfer is enhanced through low profile grooves rolled into the tubes that create moderate turbulence on the potable water side without the problematic mineral deposition often found in finned units. The smaller B-130 is ideal for residential systems with up to 64 sq. ft. of collector area, and the larger B-180 is well suited for larger systems and small hydronic heating applications.

These heat exchangers are also well suited for solar pool and spa application.  Due to the high flow rates found in pool filter circuits, tube-in-shell units are usually preferred over brazed plate units.  The table below lists the tube in shell units, their dimensions and the maximum array area they can handle while maintaining performance on par with open-loop designs. The standard tube in shell unit is constructed of 316L Stainless Steel, which has excellent corrosion resistance to chlorinated pool water provided the chemical balance and pH of the pool water is closely regulated. Titanium heat exchangers are significantly more expensive, but have superior chemical resistance. For salt water pools and spas, titanium heat exchangers are required.

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Heat Exchanger Specifications

SunEarth Model Number Diameter (in) Length (in) Heat Transfer Area (sq ft) Maximum Array Area (sq ft) Shell (Cold) Side Flow (gpm) Shell (Cold) Side Press Drop )psi Shell (Cold) Side Flow (gpm) Shell (Cold) Side Press Drop )psi Tubeside Connection Shellside Connection
B-130 4.5 15.6 3.6 180 7.1 1.2 52.8 1.7 3/4" NPTF 1.5" NPTF
B-180 5.5 15.1 4.7 250 7.9 0.4 55.5 1.1 1" NPTF 1.5" NPTF
B-250 5.5 20.2 6.8 350 9.3 0.6 71.3 1.7 1" NPTF 1.5" NPTF
B-300 5.5 24.9 9.0 400 10.6 0.9 79.3 2.5 1" NPTF 1.5" NPTF
B-500 5.5 42.7 16.8 700 14.5 1.3 95.1 3.2 1" NPTF 2" NPTF
B-1000 6.6 36.1 21.5 1,400 25.1 2.4 185.2 4.2 2" NPTF 2" NPTF
Materials 316 L SS Titanium
Max Working Pressure: 250 psig 150 psig
Max Working Temp: 406 °F 375 °F

Typical Applications

Tube heat exchangers are typically used as a sidearm style heat exchanger in retrofit applications. Conventional electric water heaters can be converted for use with solar by adding a tube heat exchanger. If the water heater is to be used to pre-heat a gas fired unit then it is suggested that the heating elements be removed from the electric water heater and the tube heat exchanger plumbed between the element holes for optimal performance. If the water heater is to used as the auxiliary electric heater, then the tube heat exchanger may be plumbed between the drain and a tee placed on the hot water outlet leaving the elements intact. In either scenario, a second pump may be placed in the potable water line for increased performance.

Closed-Loop Glycol

Closed-Loop Glycol