Solution theory model for thermophysical properties of refrigerant/lubricant mixtures



A general model for predicting the thermophysical properties of refrigerant/lubricant mixtures has been developed based on applicable theory for the excess Gibbs energy of nonideal solutions. In our approach, flexible thermodynamic forms are chosen to describe the properties of both the gas and liquid phases of refrigerant/lubricant mixtures. After an extensive study of models for describing nonideal liquid effects, the Wohl [3]-suffix equations, which have been extensively used in the analysis of hydrocarbon mixtures, have been developed into a general form applicable to mixtures where one component is a polyolester or alkylbenzene lubricant. We have developed a nonideal solution computer code, based on the Wohl model that predicts dew point or bubble point conditions over a wide range of composition and temperature and includes the calculation of the enthalpy and entropy of refrigerant/lubricant mixtures. Our present analysis includes the thermodynamic properties of an ideal solution mixture and the corrections due to nonideal solution behavior. These nonideal solution corrections are based on analysis of the excess Gibbs energy of the mixture. We find that these nonideal solution corrections are small (<4%) for most refrigerant/lubricant mixtures, except at very low temperatures. © 2009 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 2009