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Road map for R290 propane heat pump in US market

Road map for R290 propane heat pump in US market - EXINDA

In the current refrigeration field, a variety of refrigerants such as R22 and R410A are extensively used. However, as environmental issues progressively capture global attention, this has accelerated the critical demand and development of innovative, eco-friendly, and efficient refrigerants. The emergence of environmentally friendly refrigerants is increasingly utilized in residential and commercial refrigeration, air conditioning, and heat pump systems. So, what are the common refrigerants used?

The Refrigerant Class

The Refrigerant Class

The Common Refrigerants

The Common Refrigerants

R290: A Promising and Environmentally Friendly Refrigerant

R290, also known as Propane (CH3CH2CH3), is a Natural Refrigerant with minimal toxicity and flammability, earning it an A3 classification. It boasts a notably low Global Warming Potential (GWP) of 20, marking it as an Eco-Friendly Heat Pump Refrigerant.

It is being actively promoted for its excellent Heat Pump Efficiency and significant latent heat of vaporization, contributing to Advanced Refrigerant Technologies for Heat Pumps. However, its flammable nature necessitates additional safety precautions to mitigate fire risks, aligning with Heat Pump Refrigerant Regulations and Standards.

R32 and R1234y: Mildly Flammable with Low Environmental Impact

R32, or Difluoromethane (CH2F2), is classified as an A2L refrigerant, indicating its mild flammability and low toxicity. It holds a GWP of 675, presenting a smaller environmental footprint and standing as a Low-GWP Refrigerant in Heat Pumps. Despite its explosive potential within certain limits, R32 is already seeing extensive use in various countries as a significant green alternative to R22, especially in Residential Heat Pump applications. It offers similar refrigeration performance to R410A but requires a smaller Refrigerant Charge, enhancing Heat Pump Performance.

R410A and R22: Transitioning Away from High GWP Refrigerants

R410A, a blend of R32 and R125, is a non-flammable and non-explosive A1 refrigerant, serving as a substitute for R22 in Heat Pump Systems. It operates at higher pressure compared to R22, demanding more robust equipment but allowing for Enhanced Heat Pump Efficiency and reduced material usage. Despite these advantages, its high GWP of 2088 highlights it as a temporary solution in the ongoing search for Eco-Friendly Heat Pump Systems.

R22, or Chlorodifluoromethane (CHClF2), is another A1 classified refrigerant. It is non-flammable and non-explosive with minimal toxicity. Despite these safety features, its positive Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) has led to a global phase-out plan, aiming for its complete elimination by 2030 due to significant environmental concerns.

Comparation about GWP in differnce A1 A2L A3 refrigerant

Comparation about GWP in differnce A1 A2L A3 refrigerant

"22.115DV D1 Modification of Clause 22.115 by adding the following: Charges greater than m may be used if in compliance with the charge limits and mitigation methods of ANSI/ASHRAE 15 (USA) and/or CSA B52 (Canada). All other requirements of this standard still apply. 

The refrigerant mass of each refrigerating system with A2 and A3 refrigerant shall not exceed m as defined in Annex GG.

The refrigerant mass of each refrigerating system for non-fixed factory sealed single package units with A2L refrigerant shall not exceed m as defined in Annex GG." - ULUL60335-2-40

As per UL standard request, the use of A3 refrigerant (R290) is limited to 114g. It is not approved for use in the US market yet. The EPA will issue a final rule in October 2023, proposing to restrict the use of higher GWP HFCs in refrigeration, air conditioning, and heat pump equipment.

This rule would prohibit the manufacture and import of products with restricted HFCs by January 1, 2025. Manufacturers are retooling factories for A2L refrigerants.

Additionally, a DOE proposal would require the most common-sized electric storage water heaters to achieve efficiency gains with heat pump technology, and gas-fired instantaneous water heaters to achieve efficiency gains through condensing technology. These standards would take effect in 2029 if finalized.

Several organizations are working to push for Air to Water Monobloc heat pumps to have separate requirements allowing for higher charge limits.

Two states, CA and NY, are lowering GWP requirements even further (below 10), which increases the need for high-performance low GWP systems like R290.

Currently, numerous research projects are seeking R290 equipment to work with, which will increase the demand and adoption in the next few years. 

The roadmap for R290 in the US is developing. We believe that in the near future, lower GWP refrigerants will be popular in the market, which could help reduce CO2 emissions for a better, greener planet."

Exinda has been at the forefront of developing R290 Heat Pump Technology since 2020. Our current Air to Water Heat Pump models are primarily designed for Residential Heat Pump applications, with heating capacities ranging from 6KW to 20KW.

To meet the growing demand for our innovative heat pump solutions, EXINDA owns a brand new factory covering 60,000m². As leading Heat Pump Manufacturers in China, Exinda has been producing low-noise Heat Pumps with high Heat Pump Efficiency since 2012. In the global Heat Pump Market, Exinda is dedicated to the design, development, manufacturing, and sales of high-quality Heat Pumps. Up to the present, our Heat Pump offerings have attained a multitude of esteemed global accreditations, encompassing CE, CB, ETL, and SASO.

To US market, Exinda manufacturering the R32 (A2L refrigerant) air to water heat pumps, here is brief introduction about model, the heat pumps are approved with UL-60335-2-30 and under listing by AHRI standard. 

R32 refrigerant working area envelope

R32 refrigerant working area envelope
15kw heat pump capacity efficiency curve15kw heat pump capacity efficiency curve
Exinda heat pump heating and cooling mode Heating & cooling mode

If you want know more about heat pump information, please contact us

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