Natural refrigerants are a good match for chillers, according to Andreas Meier, Managing Director of  German OEM Teko.

Meier highlighted the suitability and advantages of using natural refrigerant-based chillers over HFC alternatives during a webinar on March 30 at the ATMO Virtual Trade Show (VTS) 2021 for natural refrigerant technologies. (ATMO VTS 2021 was organized by shecco, the publisher of this website.)

His presentation looked at the life cycle of natural refrigerants like CO2 (R744), ammonia/NH3 (R717) and propane (R290). He discussed refrigerant effects, investment and energy costs, installation, operation and service. Each natural refrigerant has its own benefits, though they all fare well compared to HFCs. “Natural refrigerants are easily accessible in the market, he advised. “Having the right information about the pros and cons that a natural refrigerant offers can result in cost savings in the long run.”

In regard to chillers, he noted that there are affordable, energy-efficient solutions in the market. When it comes to installation, “it is important to follow your country’s safety measures as regulated by authorities,” he added. Each refrigerant has standards for installation inside and outside, and  he also gave an overview of where sensors for flammability and toxicity should be placed.

In an interview prior to ATMO VTS 2021, Meier pointed out that when chillers are used for air conditioning, for every application “there is a natural refrigerant solution available that you can use.”

He indicated that propane is the most efficient natural refrigerant for AC in the summer.” If you use propane, you would take the same safety measures as for A2Ls,” he said, adding that the typical charge, depending on capacity, is 5-30kg (30-66lbs).

If a chiller is used throughout the year for process cooling, then CO2 is very efficient, he said. “You can run it in subcritical mode, so you have a different energy calculation.”

During his presentation, Meier showcased some of the natural refrigerant chiller solutions that Teko has to offer. “Some of the advantages of our chillers include energy efficiency, and they are environmentally friendly,” he said.

ATMO VTS 2021 presentations can still be viewed until the end of April on the show platform. To register, click here.

Author Ntsako Khosa

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