Using nozzles to regulate cooling tower water distribution pressure?

As we say repeatedly, proper water distribution is literally the key to cooling tower thermal performance. If this piece of the puzzle is missing, your cooling tower will never meet your design specifications.

In some cases, the water pressure in your cooling tower has become inadequate to properly “pressure” your fixed orifice system. As a result, your water distribution system is essentially a drainage system. Not good.

Our Variable Flow Nozzle is spring loaded which means that until the entire water distribution system is “pressured up” no water will drain out of the nozzle. Once the proper pressure (about 1 pound) is met the nozzle spring will allow water to exit the nozzles and spray our square pattern.

An easy way to increase cooling tower performance.

In general, cooling towers are thought of as the least important piece of equipment in most facilities. I’ve actually had plant managers tell me that cooling tower repairs are perpetually on the bottom of their “to-do” lists every year. As a result, over half of all the cooling towers in the world are underperforming.

The consequences of having and underperforming cooling tower are pretty straight forward. The owner of the cooling tower has to cut rates or produce less than the optimal amount as a result of the bottleneck caused by the “supply” water temps.

One of the easiest ways to increase performance of a counterflow cooling tower is to upgrade the water distribution nozzles. The performance and spray pattern of your cooling tower nozzles are key to the overall efficiency of your cooling tower. When the nozzles don’t distribute water evenly, air slips right past the water through the void areas. RoundPattern

This image makes it’s pretty simple to understand the critical nature of getting your water distribution in top working order. It’s literally one of the most important parts of any cooling tower. Yet most facilities neglect doing this simple work.

Our Spin Free and Variable Flow nozzles both produce square patterns that allow you to have complete, uniform coverage of the fill media. Our nozzles can boost your cooling tower’s performance immediately with little cost and in a very short time.

Contact us to get pricing on our game changing nozzles.

Industry first. A nozzle that works like a valve.

Nozzle that acts as a Valve
Variable flow has the potential for significant energy savings.

The Nozzle that Thinks it’s a Flow Control Valve and a Cash Register.

Here at Curtis Enterprises, we’ve been in the cooling tower industry for decades, and we know energy conservation requires balancing an equation – air flow to water distribution. The good news is that companies have made great strides in conserving energy on the fan, or air flow side of the equation. As an example, think of two-speed and Variable Frequency Drive fan motors. keep reading about the VFN.

But true efficiency has continued to elude the industry, which has made very little progress on the water distribution side of the equation. If you master efficiency here, then you can save a good deal of both energy and money.

The Solution that isn’t a Solution

One way to create more efficiency would be to manually manipulate the enormous flow control valves located at each cell. We know what you’re thinking, “Who’s going to do that?” Exactly. Those rusty, unwieldy valves are nearly impossible to regulate manually. Plus, the process is difficult and expensive, which countermands the whole idea of saving money in the first place.

The end result? At most cooling towers, all the pumps stay on all the time, all year round. This, friends, is a colossal waste of energy and your hard-earned money.

The Real Solution – One that Works and Saves You Money

That’s why we at Curtis Enterprises have created a viable, sustainable, and (if we may say so) brilliant solution to the problem: the Variable Flow Nozzle. If the Variable Frequency Drive, or VFD, fan motors help the air side of the equation…the Variable Flow Nozzle takes care of the water side, conserving huge amounts of energy.

How does it work?

The Variable Flow Nozzle goes with the flow, so that your money doesn’t flow out the window. The Variable Flow Nozzle has a spring-loaded orifice that automatically opens and closes with changing water pressure: in other words, the Variable Flow Nozzle doubles as a flow-control valve. That means you can turn OFF one or more of your cooling tower pumps as the wet bulb or load conditions dictate. This will conserve enormous amounts of energy.

Really? It Doubles as a Flow-Control Valve?

Yes indeed. Let’s take a look at a typical three-cell cooling tower. It has two pumps and three fans.

Two of our three cells have a single-speed, 100-horse power motor. The third cell utilizes a VFD fan motor.

There’s one two-speed pump, and one (hundred) 100-horsepower pump.

In this example, it’s a spring morning, and heat loads are down. For optimal efficiency, we run only the two-speed pump… at 1/2 speed…dispersing the hot water equally over the media in the three cells. The hot air naturally rises as it cools the water. And the Variable Flow Nozzle automatically adjusts to accommodate. No fans needed.

This is ultimate efficiency: the tower becomes a natural-draft cooling tower.

At some point, though, the heat load rises. So the next step is to engage the VFD fan motor, cycling it up in increments until it reaches capacity. Then switch it off, switch on one single-speed fan, and increase the 2-speed pump to full speed.

We now have one single-speed fan and one pump operating. And the variable flow nozzle won’t miss a beat.

This is ultimate efficiency: the tower becomes a natural-draft cooling tower.

At some point, though, the heat load rises. So the next step is to engage the VFD fan motor, cycling it up in increments until it reaches capacity. Then switch it off, switch on one single-speed fan, and increase the 2-speed pump to full speed.

We now have one single-speed fan and one pump operating. And the variable flow nozzle won’t miss a beat.

When heats loads or the wet bulb exceed that fan’s capabilities, repeat the cycle with the VFD fan motor, tracking the temperature rise to a point where two single-speed fans are required. When the third fan is required, cycle the VFD to full speed. Again, the Variable Flow Nozzles will automatically calibrate.

At maximum heat load, both of the pumps and all three fans will be operating at capacity, and still the Variable Flow Nozzle will be adjusting automatically to create maximum efficiency. No user intervention required.

Sounds great. Except I already have a tower.

No problem. The Variable Flow Nozzle solution is not only simple, but it can be applied to both existing and new cooling towers. And not just cooling towers: fluid coolers, scrubbers, trickling filters and other water-cooled equipment

Can I speak with someone?

And we’re here to answer all your questions. Just give us a call at 405-476-7003 to learn more about the revolutionary new Variable Flow Nozzle.

Are your flooding your fill media?

If you’ve ever noticed brown spots on your lawn near green, overly weedy areas, then you’ve likely adjusted your sprinklers. The reason? You’ve wanted to achieve perfect hydraulic balance to keep those weedy areas from being so flooded with water, and to ensure those crispy brown spots receive a much-needed drink.

Likewise, if you’ve ever noticed your cooling tower’s corrugated cellular film media flooded and clogged in some areas and underserved in others, you’ve likely wanted to balance out that watering, too. That’s because in the cooling industry, unbalanced water loading equals poor thermal performance.

Balance means every flute of the fill media receives an equal volume of water flowing through it. Too much water flow results in flooding of the flute, which ultimately restricts airflow. Too little water flow will result in air doing little or no work, because when voids, or uneven water loading patterns, exist, then the moving air will migrate to the point of least resistance. These voids become little chimneys that allow the air to escape through the fill media.

All of that escaping or restricted air makes your cooling tower much less efficient. The process wastes energy. It wastes water. And it wastes your money.

The solution, of course, is efficient hydraulic balance across all those fill media. The problem, however, is that balancing water loading is a notoriously difficult hat trick.

Until now.

The Variable Flow Nozzle from Curtis Technologies creates truly hydraulically balanced water loading across all fill media. Balanced loading not only eliminates voids, which greatly improves thermal efficiency, but it also minimizes fouling, which greatly extends the serviceable life of the fill media. How does it work? The Variable Flow Nozzle isn’t like other industry nozzles. It produces near-perfect square water patterns, and therein lies all the difference.

As you know, today’s spray nozzles produce a circular, umbrella-shaped water pattern, the culprit behind that uneven water loading and poor thermal performance. Think on this: conventional nozzles render a whopping 22% of the fill media without water. Knowing about this critical loss, the industry overlaps nozzles, but that practice results in even heavier loading where the overlaps occur, and, of course, minimal loading elsewhere. In the end you’ve still got flooded, suffocated media next to minimally watered, chimney-type media. You’ve spent extra money on overlapping the nozzles, only to find that you’ve lost money in the continually poor thermal performance of your tower.

That’s exactly why we created the Variable Flow Nozzle. We want to save you money and make your cooling tower as efficient as it can be. Not only will the Variable Flow Nozzle’s unique geometric profile evenly disburse and diffuse the exiting water over fill media in a balanced, three-foot-by-three-foot square water pattern, but it will ensure that your corrugated fill media lasts as long as possible.

If you’re looking to significantly improve thermal performance and achieve true hydraulic balance for your cooling tower application, then give us a call at 405-476-7003 to learn more about the revolutionary new Variable Flow Nozzle.

Using Cooling Tower Nozzles to Save Water and Pump Energy.

Water is becoming a real issue these days.  Whether you’re talking about droughts in Colorado, polluted groundwater in Louisiana, or multi-state fights over the Rio Grande and the Mississippi, water is becoming as valuable as oil.

Engineers typically design cooling towers to perform in the hottest part of the year. But even on hot days, the weather cools significantly in the evening and nighttime. When summer is over, fall and spring bring much cooler temperatures to your tower, and the wet bulb temperature drops accordingly. When the wet bulb temperature drops below the designed wet bulb temperature, the cooling tower’s performance increases proportional.

The cooling industry has made great strides on the air side of the equation. For instance, cooling tower operators will turn fans down to low speed, or run the VFD, or shut off fans completely when the wet bulb drops.

But on the water side, waste rules. Pumps are typically turned on and run constantly, no matter what the wet bulb temperature is. The reason for this gross waste of energy is that, until now, there has been no viable option to control the water flow because of the way cooling towers are designed.

The pumps and fans of cooling towers are not in sync. For example, you might see (3) pumps for a 5-or-10-cell cooling tower. Let’s assume that the wet bulb drops to a point so that a 10-cell tower was overproducing by 10%. In theory, at that point your load could be met with only 9 cells . In other words, we could possibly shut one cell off completely, including the fan and water flow.

Shutting the fan off is easy. Shutting off the one tenth of the water flow with 3 pumps operating is not attainable unless you have VFDs on the pumps. And even with VFDs, managing flow control valves at each cell is hard because those valves are often corroded and difficult to operate.

If the flow control valves are in working order, trying to open and close flow control valves with the rising and falling wet bulb is both unpractical and economically unfeasible.

Now there is an simple answer: the revolutionary Variable Flow Nozzle. The water flow can now be controlled at the nozzle.

Just leave the flow control valves full open all the time, all year long, and let the Variable Flow Nozzle do all the work and make the flow adjustments. This is a nozzle that thinks it’s a flow control valve. Instead of wrestling an unwieldy, corroded, valves, you just let the nozzle automatically adjust the water flow.

Learn more about the Variable Flow Nozzle at or call us at 405-476-7003.