In this study, a plate heat exchanger (PHE) was designed to meet the ventilation requirements in a small dwelling by performing heat recovery. In the Taguchi analysis performed by selecting three-level four effective parameters, L9 orthogonal array was used. In the analysis, the optimal levels of the design variables were determined by using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) results in order to maximize the combined thermal and hydrodynamic effectiveness (CTHE) selected as the performance parameter. The CTHE was defined as the multiply of thermal effectiveness and flow effectiveness of the PHE. The 3-dimesional CFD models of the PHE were designed to include the effects of the local change in the flow cross-section, which will occur at the inlet-outlet of the air flow channels. Thermal and hydrodynamic computation of PHE models were obtained by finite volume software. In Taguchi analysis, design variables and levels that maximize CTHE: sub-channel number-6, channel height-3 mm, average air flow rate-2 m/s and plate material is paper. When the CTHE predicted from Taguchi analysis was compared with that solution of the CFD model generated using the optimized design and operating parameters, the difference was determined to be less than 1%. In addition, in order to calculate the CTHE based on the design variables, a mathematical equation was obtained in a 90% confidence interval.
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