Koura submits CO2 alternative for ASHRAE approval
February 28, 2022
The unusual component blend of a new non-flammable refrigerant from Koura, which it claims has a lower environmental impact and better performance than CO2, has now been revealed.
First announced last year and dubbed LFR3, Koura claims the new refrigerant will be suitable for a range of cooling applications including mobile air conditioning, heat pump systems, cold chain and transport refrigeration and commercial refrigeration.
The refrigerant, which is said to be up to 20% more energy efficient than CO2 with 15-20% lower operating pressure, has now been submitted to ASHRAE for designation and safety classification.
The new gas is, itself, 69% CO2 with the addition of 21% R32 and 10% R1132a. According to Koura, the combination makes LFR3 non-flammable – the CO2 suppressing the flammability of the other two components. These blend proportions also give LFR3 a GWP of 143 under AR4, tucking it neatly under the 150 GWP refrigerant limit now in place in Europe for certain applications.
A GWP of less than 150 is required under the MAC regulations for vehicle air conditioning systems and, since January 1, the European F-gas regulations have placed the same limit on new hermetically-sealed commercial refrigerators and freezers and multipack centralised commercial refrigeration systems with a rated capacity of 40kW or more. The US Environmental Protection Agency is also said to be considering a similar national regulation that may take effect in 2024.
The R1132a molecule features in a number of other new Koura developments including R473A, its recently released low GWP alternative to R23 in ultra low temperature applications.