MTL Cool launched its new hydrocarbon cooling cabinet at the 2015 FMI Connect Trade using hydrocarbon HCR188C/R441A, a climate-friendly refrigerant developed by A.S. Trust.
Based in Quebec Canada, MTL Cool’s new NRC-2 cabinet is supplying a demand for end users to invest in new technology specifically designed for hydrocarbon refrigerants without risking safety by relying on short-term drop-in solutions.
Following its development and approval, HCR188C/R441A has been widely used in retrofitted equipment to save costs and due to its use as a direct replacement for the refrigerants R12 and R134A, used in residential appliances, commercial refrigeration and auto-cooling systems.
However, the NRC-2 is a complete solution for end users, avoiding retrofitting while achieving 17% reduction in energy consumption compared to conventional R290 systems.
EPA approved technology
HCR188C/R441A was one of the first hydrocarbon refrigerants to be approved for sale by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under the Significant New Alternative Policy (SNAP) programme for use in household refrigerators and freezers.
MLT began testing it on a standard commercial 1.17m-wide, two-door unit in April 2015. The testing was done by substituting the original compressor, using HFC coolant R134a, which is currently being phased out worldwide due to its high global warming potential (GWP), with equal-capacity compressor running propane (R290).
The compressor was then filled with the hydrocarbon blend HCR188C/R441A and has been running non-stop at rated temperatures. In comparison to R290, new data shows that the new NRC-2 system needs less of the HCR188C/R441A refrigerant and has achieved a 17% smaller charge and a 17% drop in energy consumption (test specifications: ambient temperature 23.8°C, relative humidity 45, interior temperature brought down to 3.3°C).
While hydrocarbons are known to be flammable refrigerants, the small HCR188C/R441A charge used in the cabinets make safety a non-factor. Due to this small amount, component size can also be reduced, lowering both build-pricing and operating costs for end users.
A.S. Trust will continue to evaluate the uses of the hydrocarbon blend as an HFC replacement by testing display units currently operating with HFC R404A, another refrigerant being phased out due to its high GWP.
About A.S. Trust
A.S. Trust & Holdings has developed a line of refrigerants based on ground-breaking pure hydrocarbons blends. The most notable blend, HCR188C/R441A, was designated by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) in January 2011. HCR188C/R441A is one of the first hydrocarbon refrigerants to be approved for sale in the United States by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under the Significant New Alternative Policy (SNAP) programme for use in household refrigerators and freezers.