For the Engineering Minded: I Have an Idea for Cooling System

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by micstrachan, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. micstrachan

    micstrachan Free Ranging

    Good afternoon. Today when I ran up the hill at lunch to drop off my daughter, I noticed the heat was picking up. I turned a box fan on the run and a small clip fan on the panting hen in the nest box. As I started to think ahead to when the real heat hits, I realized running up the hill at lunch daily may not be realistic.
    Then I remembered my car racing days. In the heat of summer, we’d zip around the track in two layers of fire retardant gear without air conditioning. It was fun, yet pretty uncomfortable. Everything changed (for the better) when our captain invested in a couple cool suits. Oh my goodness, the elixir of cool. No, we didn’t actually drink a potion. Instead, we donned shirts with tubing sewn into magnificent arrangements, and pumped ice water through the tubes. Instant relief!
    Sooo... today I thought, what if I tried this in my run? Or even the coop? I would need some sort of tubing. Unlike the flexible (surgical?) tubing of the cool suits, something rigid (pvc?) might be better. Maybe buried a foot into the earth or layer across the front of the nesting boxes. The tubes would need to make leak-proof connections to a chest of ice water. And, of course, a pump would be needed. Not sure what type of pump. Fish tank pump? A peristaltic pump with a section of flexible tubing? And what would be even cooler (pun intended) would be if the pump could run off solar (in event of a power failure or just to conserve.)
    I have no idea of thermodynamics and how long the water would stay cool in any given outdoor temperature, but fun to think about.
    What do you think of this idea? Think heated bathroom floor, except it would be a cooled area of the run. :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2019
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  2. Mad Murduck

    Mad Murduck Chirping

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    It's a cool idea ! The main issues I can imagine are condensation and connections. Any tubing that would allow for a sufficient thermal exchange would sweat significantly with ice water . Threaded connections would leak sooner than later due to the constant temperature fluctuation . I am no expert but in theory changing the temp of fluid in a closed loop via external coolant should work in your favor. Something more like a fuel line cooler would provide a more even temperature differential. I mean the coffee can full ice with tubing looped in it kind of fuel line cooler not the fancy kind. Or perhaps a water tank buried a few feet down with recirculating line closer to the surface ,like an improvised geothermal pump. Pex pipe would probably work well for thermal transfer. It is semi rigid but malleable and very durable. If you had for example a constant 50-60 degrees pumping through the loop it would radiate cold like a concrete slab. In theory:)
     
    micstrachan likes this.
  3. micstrachan

    micstrachan Free Ranging

    Cool! Thanks for your feedback!
     
  4. 123RedBeard

    123RedBeard Crowing

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  5. Mad Murduck

    Mad Murduck Chirping

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    You could make a terra cotta ac very easily. It would be like a small wall made of cool breeze.
     

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