Data center cooling


Gasketed plate heat exchangers

In each free cooling installation, gasketed plate heat exchangers are the industry standard for general cooling duties. Alfa Laval plate heat exchangers have high heat transfer efficiency, low maintenance costs and reliable performance.

To get the lowest PUE and highest efficiency, package gasketed plate heat exchangers with dry coolersadiabatic coolers, and new Low Speed Ventilation server coolers.

How gasketed plate heat exchangers work

The animation shows the working principle of a liquid/liquid 1-pass gasketed plate and frame heat exchanger where the fluids run counter-currently through the heat exchanger. The hot liquid (illustrated in red) normally enters through one of the upper connections and leaves through the connection underneath. The cold liquid (illustrated in blue) enters through one of the lower connections and leaves through the connection above.

As the fluids pass through the heat exchanger, heat is transferred from the hot media to the cold media. Counter current flow enables maximum heat recovery possibilities and very close temperature approach can be achieved. Temperature cross is also possible, meaning that the hot outlet can reach a lower temperature than the cold outlet.

The fluids enter through the connections and portholes of the heat transfer plates. Specially designed sealing gaskets located between the plates direct the fluids so that the hot and cold fluids pass counter-currently in alternating channels. When the fluid enters between the plates, it passes over the distribution area. Alfa Laval offers two types of distribution areas: CurveFlow and the chocolate pattern. The distribution area is one of the most important features of a plate heat exchanger. Its main purpose is to ensure an even flow of fluid over the entire plate while maximizing heat transfer efficiency and minimizing maldistribution and fouling. 

GPHE benefits

  • AHRI certified - free third party certification that ensures thermal performance
  • High energy efficiency
  • Most effective plate design on the market
  • Flexible configuration
  • Easy to expand for increasing cooling duty
  • Small footprint compared to shell-and-tube heat exchangers (refer to the illustration for comparison)


AHRI performance certification 

The Alfa Laval AlfaQ range is certified according to the AHRI Liquid to Liquid Heat 
Exchangers (LLHE) Certification Program which ensures thermal performance
according to manufacturers' published specifications.

Visit the AHRI website or contact us to learn more about the free certification process


GPHE features that matter

CurveFlow distribution area

What is it?

One of the most important features of a plate heat exchanger, the distribution area ensures full use of the heat transfer area and minimizes fouling.

Risks with other designs

An inefficient distribution area with uneven flow causes maldistrubution and fouling build up.

Five point alignment

What is it?

Keeps the plates aligned during closing of the plate heat exchanger that facilitates service.

Risks with other designs

Many alignment systems do not close the vertical gap between the carrying bar and the plate, leading to wavy plate packs with leaking problems.

Bearing box

What is it?

A device between the tightening bolt head and the frame that reduces friction forces and makes service easier.

Risks with other designs

Opening and closing the PHE without bearing boxes is time consuming and increases the risk of paint damage, which can lead to corrosion damage.

ClipGrip gasket

What is it?

A glue free gasket with superior alignment that ensures a perfect seal and trouble-free maintenance. Fastening to the plate is improved by having five fastening points.

Risks with other designs

Other gasket designs, such as snap-in gaskets, only have one fastening point to the plate. If this one point is lost, there is no gasket fastening function.

Swing feet

What are they?

Swing feet can simply be swung to the side for service, allowing for quick and easy opening of the unit while maintaining its seismic rating.

Risks with other designs

Most plate heat exchangers have feet that are bolted or welded to the frame and/or pressure plate. These feet are more likely to get stuck, and they also have to be completely removed for servicing. 

Gasket profile

What is it?

The performance of a heat exchanger is influenced by different components and places very high demands on the gasket system. To obtain highest performance, it is important that the plate and gasket are designed together.

Risks with other designs

Many gasket suppliers apply a “one size fits all” low cost production philosophy, which can cause premature leakage, gasket damages or misaligned plate packs.


Fast and easy service

Get the best performance out of your heat exchangers by pairing them with a
Cleaning In Place (CIP) system, automatic backflush valve, and port filters. 

Cleaning In Place systems

Cleaning In Place (CIP) systems enable quick and easy in-line cleaning of heat exchangers without dismantling your equipment, thereby drastically reducing both spare parts consumption and the number of man-hours required for cleaning.

Automatic backflush valve

Use an automatic backflush valve to regularly flush out material that can accumulate at the heat exchanger's inlet.

Port filters

For conditions involving any kind of water containing particles, port filters help prevent foreign objects from entering and clogging the heat exchanger.

Learn more about Servicing GPHEs


Contact us for more information.