Performance Evaluation of Packaged Rooftop AC Units with Alternative Refrigerants at High Ambient Temperature Environments

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Lead Performer: Oak Ridge National Laboratory – Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Partners: 

Panel of International Experts

UNEP → United Nations Environmental Programme
UNIDO → United Nations Industrial Development Organization

DOE Total Funding: $1,685,000
FY17 DOE Funding: $289,000
Cost Share: Partners’ in-kind contribution of RTU test units and samples of alternative refrigerants
Project Term: June 2016 – September 2017
Funding Type: Lab Award

Project Objective

Oak Ridge National Laboratory is evaluating the drop-in performance of alternative refrigerants in advanced rooftop units (RTUs). This supports industry needs for low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerant solutions to the current typical refrigerants used in rooftop air conditioner units (RTU); R-22 in the developing world and R-410A in developed nations. This project evaluated multiple alternative refrigerants in a range of operating conditions up to extreme hot conditions, 131°F, experienced in the Middle East and India—two of the most expanding markets for air conditioners.

This project involves a panel of international experts to review the research approach, refrigerant selection, and results. In addition, baseline RTUs along with alternative refrigerants were donated to ORNL for lab testing by system and refrigerant manufacturers.

Project Impact

This project provides the HVAC community with an unbiased, science-based investigation into the performance of different suggested low GWP drop-in alternative refrigerants for R-22 and R-410A packaged RTUs. Two baseline RTUs (a 27 kW R-22 unit and a 39 kW R-410A unit) were tested under controlled lab conditions with the baseline refrigerants and several low-GWP alternates at a range of outdoor temperature conditions.

Publicly available reports as well as several technical papers, conference seminars, and workshop presentations have been published to disseminate the information to the community.

Contacts

DOE Technology Manager: Antonio Bouza
Lead Performer: Omar Abdelaziz, Oak Ridge National Laboratory 

Related Publications

Abdelaziz, O., S. Shrestha, B. Shen, A, Elatar, R. Linkous, W. Goetzler, M. Guernsey, and Y. Bargach, 2016. Alternative Refrigerant Evaluation for High-Ambient-Temperature Environments: R-22 and R-410A Alternatives for Rooftop Air Conditioners. ORNL/TM-2016/513, September.

Shen, B., O. Abdelaziz, S. Shrestha, and A. Elatar, 2016. Compare Optimized Performance Results for Packaged RTU using all Alternative Refrigerants – FY17 1st Quarter Milestone Report. ORNL/TM-2017/12, December.

Abdelaziz, O., S. Shrestha, and B. Shen, 2017. “Potential Alternative Lower Global Warming Refrigerants for Air Conditioning in Hot Climates.” Proceedings of Second International Conference on Energy and Indoor Environment for Hot Climates.   Pages 100-107, February 26-27, 2017, Doha Qatar.

Abdelaziz, O., 2017. “Alternative Refrigerants for Air Conditioning in Hot Climates.” Keynote presentation at Second International Conference on Energy and Indoor Environment for Hot Climates.  February 26-27, 2017, Doha Qatar.

Abdelaziz, O., S. Shrestha, and B. Shen, 2017. “Alternative Lower Global Warming Refrigerants for Air Conditioning in Hot Climates.” Presentation at Second International Conference on Energy and Indoor Environment for Hot Climates. February 26-27, 2017, Doha Qatar.

Abdelaziz, O., 2017. “Performance Evaluation of Packaged Rooftop Unit at High Ambient Temperature Environments.” Presented at 2017 DOE/BTO Peer Review meeting, March 13-16, Washington, D.C.