Air conditioning is all conducted on an identical principle of exchange.
- A gas, called a refrigerant, is introduced into the system to effect this exchange.
- The gas is one that can easily, and quickly move from a low to a high pressure situation and also change from a gas to a liquid and back again rapidly.
- It is this property that makes the air conditioning cooling reaction possible.
- The low pressure gas is sent through a compressor where the gas is pressurized rapidly which converts the relatively cool gas is converted in to a heated, high pressure gas.
- At this point in the process the hot gas begins to pass through the condenser coils which are meant to reduce the temperature of the gas (allow it to dissipate due to an expansion of volume) and it turns into its liquid form. The liquid is still at a high pressure but it is cooler.
- The liquid passes in to the evaporator coils and its pressure drops rapidly.
This process turns the liquid back into a gas and cools it even more rapidly. This reaction is what gives the substance the name “refrigerant” because this reaction is what allows heated air to become cooled and sent out to the other areas of the house.
- The cooled gas then goes back to the compressor to start the process all over again.
- Hot air from the house is brought in past the evaporator coil and it is cooled, at which point a blower pushes it back out into the room.
- This cooled air is exchanged constantly with the hotter air in the room until the reaction within the air conditioner has cooled the temperature in the room to some preset value on the unit.
This is very basically how a room is cooled with a portable air conditioner (or any other kind for that matter).