18791161_sUSA: The AHRI has awarded a $150,000 grant to the University of Maryland to support the AHRI’s research on refrigerant flammability.

The contract, awarded to the University’s Department of Fire Protection Engineering, is to evaluate energy produced by potential ignition sources in residential applications relative to minimum ignition energy from a list of A2L refrigerants, and to investigate the likelihood of the presence of ignition sources and refrigerant ignition.

The results could be used to expand the existing risk assessment studies of A2L refrigerants by providing further detail.

Low-GWP refrigerants are generally well-characterised in terms of their LFLs, heats of combustion, and flame speeds. However, they are poorly understood in terms of their susceptibility to ignition from sources commonly encountered in household and industrial settings, including open flames, electric arcs, and hot surfaces. This adds large uncertainties to any risk assessment of A2L refrigerants. This important gap in understanding is the focus of this research.

The project, titled Investigation of Energy Produced by Potential Ignition Sources in Residential Application, will be led by associate professor Peter Sunderland and research associate Dr Vivien Lecoustre. It is  is divided into three main tasks: a detailed literature survey; development of an ignition test plan; and performance of ignition tests. The project will end in October 2016.

Related stories:

AHRI to focus on A2L refrigerant use April 8, 2015
USA: The AHRI is looking to help industry understand the comparative risks and develop a set of application requirements for using A2L refrigerants. Read more…