Projects: Low Charge Ammonia - High Performance


What is Low Charge NH3?

During the month of October 2016, 197 countries decided to amend the Montreal Protocol to include HFC refrigerants. This means Freons (HFC's) are scheduled for a phase-down similar to CFC's. Low charge NH3 refrigeration systems are the totally future proof and proven alternative to HFC based systems.

Other significant advantages are documented energy performance improvements of up to 67% compared with single stage, air cooled Freon systems with electric defrost, 30-50 times lower NH3 inventory in the warehouse air coolers and 3-5 times lower overall NH3 inventory compared with conventional NH3 plants with liquid overfeed.

Low charge NH3 systems - whether retrofits or new plants - pay for themselves in 3 to 6 years based on energy savings alone.

Low charge NH3 systems are ideal retrofits for industry standard, air cooled Freon based refrigeration systems with refrigeration capacities from about 100 kW and upwards.

HFC refrigerants are powerful global warming agents. Phasing out these substances has the potential to reduce global warming by 0.5oC between now and 2100.

There are only five refrigerants that will be totally immune from future application restrictions on environmental grounds. These are ammonia, carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons, water and air.

Australia is committed to an 85% HFC phase-down scheduled to commence in 2018 with completion by 2036. The result will be rapidly escalating HFC refrigerant costs caused by supply/demand mechanisms.


At a Glance:

- 30-50 times lower NH3 inventory inside the warehouse coolers compared with conventional liquid overfeed systems,

- total release of the NH3 operating charge from one of three air coolers in a typical warehouse will in most cases not cause dangerous NH3 concentrations,

- overall reduction of a factor 3 to 5 in NH3 inventory compared with conventional liquid overfeed NH3 systems,

- several installations in cold storage and food processing facilities in most major Australian capital cities since 2003,

- Freon style electricity bills will in most cases pay for a new low charge NH3 system in 5-6 years,

- no ammonia pumps,

- up to 2/3 documented improvement in annual energy performance compared with industry standard, air cooled Freon systems with electric defrost,

- use of 304SS interconnecting NH3 pipe lines throughout means no rust and no painting - ever,

- ideal for replacement of existing, industrial and semi-industrial out-dated and inefficient Freon refrigeration systems,

- presents itself as a completely future proof solution for most industrial and semi-industrial refrigeration applications,

- documented maintenance costs,

- ideal for combining with PV panels and battery storage for off-grid operation,

- cold stores up to around 50,000 m3 refrigerated volume will have <500 kg NH3 inventory.


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