Charge limit increase imminent

The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) has taken the next step towards increasing the charge limit of A3 refrigerants in commercial refrigeration equipment.

As reported earlier this year, the change would increase the limit on A3 (flammable) refrigerants such as propane in commercial refrigeration equipment from 150g to 500g. This would enable hydrocarbons to be used in larger refrigeration and air conditioning systems, widening the use of these natural refrigerants.

A subcommittee of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) has approved advancing to the next stage of the standards process. The change will go to a final vote phase by the end of the year. If it passes the vote, the standard could be published in early 2019. Individual countries would then decide if and when to adopt the standard.

“It will take two to three months [to move to the] final vote, where we will need the support of all,” said Marek Zgliczynski, who chairs the subcommittee and is also manager of commercial refrigeration product engineering for Embraco.

The change would open up new markets for manufacturers, and give end users a wider selection of options.

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