MORRIS TOWNSHIP, NJ -- Honeywell announced today that its new Solstice refrigerant for supermarket refrigeration has been named a finalist for the R&D 100 Awards, sponsored by R&D Magazine.
Often referred to as the "Oscars of Invention," the R&D 100 Awards honors the 100 most innovative technologies and services of the past year. Evaluated with Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Solstice N40 (R-448A) refrigerant replaces high-global-warming refrigerants in supermarket applications. It is part of a growing line of Solstice products for applications ranging from auto air conditioning to highly-energy efficient appliance and building insulation, that have significantly lower global warming potential.
"Naming Solstice N40 a finalist for this award recognizes more than a decade of research and investment that resulted in new solutions to help end customers lower their greenhouse gas impact while complying with new and anticipated regulations," said George Koutsaftes, refrigerants business director for Honeywell Fluorine Products. "In addition to its lower environmental impact, Solstice N40 is highly energy efficient, giving supermarket owners an added benefit."
Solstice N40 was nominated by the publication in the Mechanical Devices/Materials category.
"This was a particularly strong year for research and development, led by many outstanding technologies that broadened the scope of innovation," said R&D Magazine Editor Lindsay Hock. "We are honored to recognize these products and the project teams behind the design, development, testing, and production of these remarkable innovations and their impact in the field. We look forward to celebrating the winners on November 13 in Las Vegas."
Global regulators are increasingly moving to phase out high-global-warming refrigerants and, on July 20, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency published landmark regulations that will phase out the use of many hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants. The new regulation, effective July 2016, will require supermarkets, largest consumers of the HFC refrigerant R-404A in the U.S., to discontinue its use as a retrofit refrigerant. R-404A will also not be permitted for use in new supermarkets beginning January 1, 2017.
Solstice N40 refrigerant, also known as R-448A, has a global warming potential (GWP) that is 68 percent lower than R-404A. In supermarket trials conducted in the U.S. and Europe, Solstice N40 demonstrated at least 3 percent lower energy consumption in low-temperature applications and 5 to 16 percent lower energy consumption in medium-temperature refrigeration compared with R-404A. In R-22 retrofit scenarios, Solstice N40 delivers similar system performance. Whether replacing R-22 or R-404A, Solstice N40 is a near drop-in replacement for supermarkets. Solstice N40 is nonflammable (ASHRAE A1) and non-ozone-depleting.
In a full-scale supermarket refrigeration evaluation under controlled conditions at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Solstice N40 demonstrated lower energy consumption and increased refrigeration capacity compared to R-404A.
Honeywell's other Solstice refrigerants that are approved under the EPA Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) program include: Solstice yf (R-1234yf), a low-global-warming replacement for R-134a, commonly used for automotive air conditioning; Solstice zd (R-1234zd) and Solstice ze (R-1234ze), which can be used in chillers and a wide range of other end uses; and Solstice N13 (R-450A), which can be used in new and retrofit vending machines.
Solstice products have been developed and are being commercialized by Honeywell's Fluorine Products business, a leader in the manufacture and supply of non-ozone-depleting refrigerants used by top air-conditioning and refrigeration makers worldwide, and blowing agents for energy-efficient foam insulation, as well as hydrofluoric acid and precursors for nuclear fuel.