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ENGIE Refrigeration bets on sustainable refrigerant

LINDAU ON LAKE CONSTANCE, GERMANY, 23 February 2021: ENGIE Refrigeration has added a new refrigerant to its portfolio. R-515B is now available for QUANTUM chillers as an alternative to R-1234ze, it said. R-515B is eco-friendly, non-toxic and non-combustible and, thus, especially safe, it said. With the introduction of the new refrigerant, the company said it is setting a clear example for more sustainability.

R-515B is available for QUANTUM models as an alternative to R-1234ze. Source: ENGIE Refrigeration

ENGIE said it is one of the first manufacturers in the world to use the refrigerant R-515B. It was developed as an alternative to R-134a and can be used instead of R-1234ze in the form of a drop-in refrigerant, it added. “Refrigerant R-515B combines the positive properties of a 77% lower greenhouse potential than R-134a with a classification as safety level A1 according to EN 378-1,” Daniel Keller, Head of Product Management, ENGIE Refrigeration, said. “This means that unlike R-1234ze (A2L), it is considered a non-combustible safety refrigerant.”

R-515B is an azeotropic mixture, 91.9% R-1234ze and 8.9% R-227ea, ENGIE said. With a GWP value of 293 (IPCC-AR4*) and 299 (IPCC-AR5**), R-515B meets the requirements of the F-Gas Regulation – until at least 2030, the company said. Another important advantage for companies operating existing machines run on R-134a is that because R-515B is classified as A1, no additional safety measures need to be taken for the machine room containing the chiller or heat pump, the company said.

From February 2021, the air-cooled, water-cooled and split models of the QUANTUM series are available with R-515B as an alternative to the previous standard refrigerant, R-1234ze, ENGIE said. “With the new refrigerant, R-515B, the chiller achieves almost the same refrigeration capacity and energy efficiency as with R-1234ze,” Keller said. “This means that R-515B is suitable for customers from all industries that require optimal refrigeration capacity and also wish to switch to an eco-friendly and sustainable refrigerant.

‘A gas leak becomes evident only after the system runs out of it’

CORNAREDO, Milan, Italy, 12 February 2021: One of the weak points in a gas detection system, especially in refrigeration applications, is that it is almost impossible to detect a small leakage in the plantroom. Dr Giacomo Frigo, Founder & Managing Director, Sensitron, said this, adding that the management realises the leakage only when there is no more gas in the system.

Dr Frigo pointed out to how hotel chains have started installing fire detectors to be able to assure guests that no accidents will occur in their hotel room. Much in the same way, he said, the right step forward would be to install gas detectors that give out a warning much before an alarm does, to improve the management of a gas detection system.

Hand in hand with installation is the maintenance of the detectors, he said. In Sensitron, for instance, we have adopted the NDIR technology in all our detectors, which he said is a bit more costly than the MOS technology. The additional cost, he added, is worth it, because the alarm value from the detector is much more stable and accurate. As a result, he further added, the period of checking and recalibration of the detector practically is three time longer than that of other systems.

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