Air-Cooled Chiller Uses Climate-Friendly Refrigerant

TraneAt an international refrigeration conference, Trane presented an air-cooled demonstration chiller with next generation, low-global warming potential (GWP) refrigerant DR-55.

This demonstration chiller is a Trane AquaTrine using DR-55, which is designed for apartments, office buildings, small restaurants, retail stores and hotels. It uses a high-efficiency hermetic scroll compressor and evaporator technology.

DR-55, marketed by The Chemours Company as Opteon XL55, is a next generation low-GWP refrigerant. An olefin-based blend, DR-55 is currently being evaluated by the HVAC industry for use in unitary and residential equipment.

Trane expects high performance HVAC systems to be available with next generation refrigerants like DR-55 within the next 12-18 months pending regulatory approval. The company does say some flammability will need to be accepted to use refrigerants with lower GWP, but refrigerants like DR-55 offer greater potential for safer implementation.

The University of California at Davis Western Cooling Efficiency Center laboratory recently completed testing of DR-55 as a design-compatible alternative to R-410A in a Trane Precedent roof top heat pump.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory recently completed demonstration testing to assess the overall performance of DR-55 as a design-compatible alternative to R-410A in commercial unitary systems or roof top units.

Earlier this year, Trane announced its Sintesis air-cooled chillers as part of its EcoWise portfolio, using low GWP refrigerants – either R-134a or DuPont Opteon XP10 (R-513A).

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