EC backs adoption of propane in small break up air conditioners

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EUROPE: The European Fee is backing the usage of propane (R290) in small split-system air conditioners, with the long run risk of a most GWP of 150 for brand spanking new tools.

The brand new report from the European Fee says: “It seems technically doable to keep away from F-gases right now in new single break up air-con with a cooling capability beneath 7kW through the use of the refrigerant R290 (propane), except nationwide laws or codes prohibit its use.”

Additional, the report promotes the top of R410A in small splits. “Thus refrigerants with a GWP >750 in new tools are not wanted in small single break up programs, except in purposes the place it’s prohibited to make use of a flammable refrigerant by constructing codes and different legislative necessities,” it states.

The report – The supply of refrigerants for brand spanking new break up air-con programs that may substitute fluorinated greenhouse gases or lead to a decrease local weather influence – relies on the findings of a examine performed by Öko Recherché and subsequent discussions with stakeholder organisations on the Fee’s F-gas Session Discussion board.

The contents of the report will kind a part of the analysis and proposals to revise the F-gas Regulation in This fall 2021.

Europe has been fast to undertake the “mildly flammable” A2L refrigerant R32 in small splits with many producers ceasing to produce R410A items. Whereas the take up of R32 items varies between particular person member states, the European Fee claims that R32 achieved an 80% market share in most nations in 2019.

There are, nevertheless, nonetheless obstacles to the acceptance of flammable refrigerants in sure European nations. In Italy and Spain constructing codes and set up necessities have been modified within the final two to 3 years to facilitate the usage of some flammable refrigerants reminiscent of R32.

In France, nationwide laws about the usage of flammable refrigerants in public entry buildings has advanced in 2019, however nonetheless incorporates sure constraints relying on whether or not the refrigerant is A2/A2L or A3. Within the case of high-rise buildings, the usage of A2/A2L and A3 refrigerants is prohibited however some work on associated laws remains to be ongoing, the Fee says. About 60% of break up programs placed on the French market in 2019 had been utilizing R32. A roadmap has been established and all of the producers are mentioned to be dedicated to utilizing a refrigerant with GWP <750 in break up programs with a refrigerant cost <3kg earlier than 2022.

As predicted by many, this might result in the eventual ban on R32 in these merchandise. Emphasising that if the areas of concern are addressed successfully, the Fee states: “An extra important discount of the GWPs of alternate options to eg beneath 150 could also be doable in small single break up programs within the medium time period.”

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