EUROPE: First it went tiny with the mini-VRV, now Daikin has launched an “invisible” VRV air conditioning system.
The new VRV IV i-series has been designed for sensitive city and urban locations where space is limited and customers want an “invisible” air conditioning solution. It has achieved this by bringing the traditional outdoor condensing unit indoors.
Although not yet officially released, the Cooling Post can reveal that, in order to meet the most stringent planning permissions and noise regulations, the new i-series breaks from traditional designs by separating the compressor and heat exchanger. This allows the system to be installed discretely indoors and the “outside” unit to be placed close to the indoor unit, showing only the grilles from the outside. For maximum concealment, grille units can be hidden behind façade features such as pediments, logo or even incorporated into the building design.
It’s split concept makes it lightweight and, according to Daikin, easy to handle by just two people, while offering the full functionality of a VRV system and the highest seasonal efficiencies.
Daikin maintains that indoor installation offers a far better economical solution than conventional outdoor units, which require expensive sound cages for installation in densely populated areas.
Together with a shorter pipe-run requirement, the new system enables installation costs to be kept to a minimum and cause no disruption to neighbouring buildings. In addition, a rotating switch box in the compressor unit is tilting, giving full and easy access to all parts from the front of the unit for easy servicing.
The compressor unit uses only 600mm x 550mm of floorspace and weighs just 80kg. With a very low operating sound of 47dBA, it is designed to fit unobtrusively into small spaces such as a back office, technical areas, storage rooms or kitchen cupboards.
The second part, of the unit, the compact heat exchanger, which is only 400mm high weighing 90kg, allows it to be concealed in false ceiling spaces. This conceals the entire air conditioning system and avoids taking up expensive commercial floor space.
The inverter fan can easily be adapted to the specific duct length and layout at a certain location, making both façade or ducted installation to the front or rear of the building possible.
A key feature of the design of the VRV IV i-series is a new patented V-shaped heat exchanger which delivers the same high efficiency as a mini VRV outdoor unit.
In addition, Daikin says its centrifugal fans are 85% more efficient than the market-standard sirocco-type fans, and use backward curved blade technology to ensure an efficient air flow over the heat exchanger with minimal turbulence. The system has also been optimised to provide a higher air flow and static pressure and provide an even better efficiency compared to a standard ducted outdoor unit.
Offering the full VRV functionality of larger units, the new units incorporate Daikin’s innovative Variable Refrigerant Temperature technology which continually adjust the system in line with outside temperatures, eliminating cold draughts and maintaining a comfortable environment, while reducing energy costs by 28% compared to standard VRV III and VRV IV series. The VRV IV i-series offers a total air conditioning solution for commercial buildings, when combined with up to ten VRV indoor units, air handling ventilation units and/or an air curtain.
The new VRV IV i-series features a dedicated control solution which allows multiple units to be controlled from one central location, either on site or remotely.
Daikin has not yet revealed the available capacities, and it is thought that it will only initially be available as a two-pipe system.
The following videos explain more about the new i-series. The first from Daikin Europe explains further the specification and unique design elements of the system. The second from UK distributor Space and the third an installation at Aerotech, Daikin’s distributor in Naples.