India showcases growing adoption of low-GWP refrigerants
Pune, India, 19 May 2019: In India, there is a growing awareness among stakeholders in the HVACR sector on the need to adopt low-GWP refrigerants, said Arvind Surange, CMD, ACR Project Consultants Pvt. Ltd. He said, “India has already been a party to sign the Kigali Agreement, and accordingly, the high-GWP refrigerants will be replaced as per the accepted phasedown schedule.”
Outlining trends related to refrigerants, Surange said that in the air conditioning sector, R32 and R410 are being used by manufacturers for a number of products. Traditionally, he added, the Indian refrigeration sector has been using ammonia, a natural refrigerant, for medium- and large-sized industrial applications and cold chain. “In the smaller plant segment, HFCs R-134a and R-404a are still being used, but as stated, India is a party to the Kigali Agreement, and the phasedown of these will start from 2028, when substitute refrigerants with lower GWP will be adopted,” he said. Citing positive developments, Surange said a number of companies in the appliances segment are already offering systems based on R-290 and R-600.
Surange added that India has already made a headway in the production of absorption systems with Li-Br combination, for air conditioning applications as well as for refrigeration applications by developing units that can produce temperatures of up to minus 5 degrees C. “The units are also available based on ammonia-water combination for applications up to minus 30 degrees C,” he said. “Thus, with the adoption of absorption systems, the use of HFCs is eliminated, both in the air conditioning and refrigeration segment.” Surange added that CO2 is also being looked at as a replacement for high-GWP refrigerants, though it may take a few years for natural refrigerants to make inroads in India, owing to technological issues.