Engineering Calculations Process Equipment Software tools

Heat exchanger design software

There are many different types of heat exchangers widely used in the process industry. They are used for cooling down or heating up any process fluids, for example - oil, natural gas, coolant fluids, water, steam etc. Out of all these types shell and tube exchangers are most popular and widely used, due to their versatility.

Heat exchanger design calculations

Normally, a process design engineer must create the process datasheet for a shell & tube exchanger, with details like - service, heat duty, utility, allowable pressure drop on shell & tube sides, operating and design T & P conditions. These parameters are determined based on some calculations. Here are some calculators, guidelines and tutorials to help you with those calculations.

Heat Exchanger Design Software Tools

But most process engineers commonly rely on process simulation software to quickly perform these heat exchanger design calculations. Then let's look at some commonly used heat exchanger design software tools which can help you.

HTRI's Xchanger Suite

The core business of Heat Transfer Research Inc. (HTRI) is focused on heat exchanger design software tools. Their core product Xchanger Suite is a very popular package for heat exchanger design.

Here are some of the important features of HTRI's Xchanger Suite.

  • Graphical user interface with have multiple case files
  • Heat transfer and pressure drop calculations are based on local fluid properties, making them more accurate
  • Includes VMGThermo™, an extensive and rigorous fluid physical property generator
  • Comprehensive online help
  • In-depth visualization of calculated results.
  • Extensive, user-extendable databank for materials of construction.
  • Imports shell-and-tube and plate-fin exchanger input files from HTFS™, Honeywell’s UniSim® Heat Exchangers, and Aspen Exchanger Design & Rating products.
  • Exchanger Optimizer™ can now be launched from within Xchanger Suite to generate comprehensive cost assessments and validate designs based on ASME code calculations.

Activated Exchanger Design and Rating from Aspen Tech

Aspen Tech is probably the most trusted name in process simulation software and their HYSYS platform is very widely used by process engineers.

Activated Exchanger Design and Rating is their heat exchanger modeling tool which can be used within the wider Aspen HYSYS and Aspen Plus platforms to produce the most optimal designs at the right economics.

Some of their important features are -

  • Comprehensive set of rigorous heat exchanger (HX) models
  • Fully incorporate heat exchanger designs within Aspen HYSYS and Aspen Plus
  • Comprehensive, up to date documentation
  • Design all major heat exchanger types, including shell and tube, fired heater, plate, plate-fin, coil-wound, air-cooled and more. Improve mechanical shell-and-tube exchanger design quality.
  • Database with 37,000 components, 127 property packages and 5M+ data points and interaction parameters
  • State-of-the-art activity coefficient models and equations of state.

COMPRESS by Codeware

COMPRESS is a pressure vessel design software by Codeware. COMPRESS ensures that your pressure vessel design is in accordance with ASME VIII standards. The heat exchanger option in COMPRESS helps you with heat exchanger design calculations based on ASME UHX and TEMA mechanical design guidelines.

Important features are -

  • ASME UHX and TEMA tubesheet thickness calculations and reports
  • Modeling of complete heat exchanger or replacement tube bundle assemblies
  • User interface for heat exchanger solid model and drawing generation
  • Seamlessly integrated TEMA 9th Edition FEA expansion joint calculations
  • API 660 nozzle loadings
  • Tube bundle removal pulling force analysis
  • ASME UHX calculations with shell bands and elastic-plastic analysis
  • Appendix 5 flanged and flued expansion joints
  • Appendix 26 bellows expansion joints
  • Appendix A tube-to-tubesheet joint calculations
  • Tubesheet layout capability including tube perimeter and un-tubed lane calculations
  • Pass partitions modeled up to eight passes
  • Read/write interface with the HTRI Xchanger Suite

Basically COMPRESS heat exchanger option is a useful tool for mechanical design of a heat exchanger. It is often used in combination with HTRI's Xchanger Suite, where process design is finalized within HTRI software and COMPRESS is used for finalizing the mechanical design.


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