The SAE International MAC Refrigerant Blend Cooperative Research Program [MRB CRP] has continued its assessment of the operating, technical and safety performance of low GWP refrigerants. At meetings held in Urbana, Illinois on 24th-25th September the team reviewed the status of the development work into equipment for both production fill and service fill of the blended refrigerant AC6 (R445A).
The prototype machine developed by Cinetic Filling for production factory fill has now been tested at its Nantes, France, site using member OEM vehicles. Results for charging a single evaporator a/c system show a total cycle filling time comparable to that of R-134a. Further trials with a wider range of vehicles, and also at member OEM sites, are planned.
Having reviewed the trial results of service fill equipment developed by TEXA using vehicles at European based member OEM sites, it was concluded that there are no technical impediments to completing the design and manufacture of this equipment for reliably filling a car a/c system with a service charge of blended refrigerant R-445A.
A second service fill system is concurrently being developed by Bosch Automotive Service Solutions in the USA. Based on initial field trial results conducted in Phoenix, Arizona, modifications are being made to the equipment; after laboratory trials further field tests will be conducted in early November. Bosch expects that there are no significant technical impediments to completing the design and manufacture of this equipment.
Further details of these significant developments in demonstrating the technical and practical viability of R-445A will be outlined at the SAE Thermal Management System Symposium [TMSS] in Troy, Michigan in October, 2013.
Additionally during this meeting the MRB CRP team gave further review to the Phase 3 of its detailed fault tree analysis, which is focusing on R-445A. This included giving full consideration to an independent assessment of the earlier phases of this fault tree analysis which had been undertaken by The Health and Safety Laboratory, Derbyshire, UK. This independent review will be incorporated into the final risk assessment report. The final details of the Phase 3 risk assessment will also be given at the 2013TMSS.
The SAE MAC Refrigerant Blend Cooperative Research Program [MRB CRP] is comprised of a group of leading global vehicle OEMs plus Tier One MACS system, service equipment and component suppliers. The members of this CRP are:
Bosch Automotive Service Solutions , Chrysler, Cinetic Filling, Daimler, Denso, Doowon, Ford, General Motors, Halla Visteon Climate Control, Hyundai, Jaguar Land Rover, Mahle, Mexichem, Nissan, PSA, Renault, SAIC Motors, Sanden, Schrader International, TEXA, Volvo Cars.
R-444A and R-445A are low GWP blended refrigerants developed by Mexichem based upon R-1234zeE.
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