Many processes in chemistry laboratories, such as distillations, the operation of reflux condensers and other heat producing laboratory equipment, require constant cooling.
In the past, one conventional approach to cooling has been to direct a steady flow of cold tap water from the laboratory faucet to the object to be cooled using simple rubber tubing, along with the subsequent discharge of the used fluid down the drain.
This age-old method, commonly used by universities, R&D organizations, and government research agencies worldwide, has two major drawbacks. First, it wastes a massive amount of potable fresh water. If an experiment draws one gallon of water every two minutes, that same experiment will consume 720 gallons over the course of a day, or 262,800 gallons per year—enough to fill an entire city water tower. Multiplying this sum by the number of experiments conducted in laboratories worldwide yields a truly staggering water-consumption amount.