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World's First*1 Commercialization of Air Conditioning Equipment Using Next-Generation Refrigerant HFC32

Contributes to preventing global warming by converting to a refrigerant with lower global warming impact than current one, HFC410A

27 September 2012

To mitigate the environmental impact from refrigerants, Daikin Industries, Ltd. will adopt in its air conditioners the refrigerant HFC32, a refrigerant having only one-third*2 of the global warming potential (GWP) of the conventional refrigerant HFC410A. Daikin considers that HFC32 is suitable for split air conditioners and heat pumps. Starting with adoption to all successive models of residential air conditioners launched in Japan from fall 2012, Daikin aims to expand use to commercial air conditioning equipment in the future.

Currently, from the perspective of curtailing global warming, selection of a refrigerant having a lesser impact on global warming is being expedited, and wide-ranging discussions concerning refrigerants, which are essential to air conditioners, can be heard in the global arena. HFC32 has drawn attention from overseas as one of effective next-generation refrigerant candidates.

In addition to having a lower global warming impact than that of HFC410A, HFC32 can help curtail greenhouse gas emissions originating from energy sources when equipment is in use by its better energy efficiency compared to HFC410A. Furthermore, it is also a refrigerant*3 that reduces the amount of refrigerant needed per air conditioning unit, has the advantage of enabling components, such as heat exchangers, to be made compact by the subsequent refrigerant savings, and is suitable for refrigerant recycling, which is being targeted for achievement in the future.

As the only manufacturer involved in all phases from refrigerant development to development of air conditioning equipment, Daikin considers HFC32 to be the most suitable refrigerant for split air conditioners and heat pumps from an investigation that took a comprehensive look at next-generation candidates such as natural and HFC refrigerants. The company has decided to commercialize air conditioning equipment using HFC32.

Up to now, Daikin has been repeatedly initiating discussions and recognition activities toward widespread acceptance of HFC32 that have included sharing information essential for selecting refrigerants at international conferences and providing forums for an exchange of opinions by leading experts. To gain recognition for HFC32, as a next-generation candidate that is effective in lessening the environmental impact, Daikin gave free access*4 in September 2011 to its "Basic Patent Essential to Manufacture and Sale of Air Conditioners Using HFC32" for most developing countries in order to prepare an environment in which each country could begin to easily promote the widespread use of HFC32 air conditioners.

The company intends to provide technical information for the widespread use of HFC32 to meet the demands of each country, region, and each type of organization as much as possible. Daikin will continue to contribute to the prevention of global warming in the future by promoting the widespread use of the refrigerant in the right place.

<Reference>[Social Background]

Although the conversion from HCFC refrigerants to HFC refrigerants having zero ozone-depleting potential has been almost completed in advanced countries, the effect of global warming impact for the refrigerant HFC410A is an issue. In emerging countries, HCFC refrigerants are still mainstream. Regulations curtailing the amount used in those countries are moving toward phasing out of HCFCs beginning from the year 2013 under the Montreal Protocol and selection of the next-generation refrigerant is being expedited with propane gas and HFC32 emerging as candidates alternative to HCFCs.

  • *1 Current as of September 27, 2012
  • *2 The IPCC Fourth Assessment Report is used for global warming potential and is used here to compare a global warming potential of 2,090 (HFC410A) against one of 675 (HFC32).
  • *3 In comparison with HFC410A which is a mixture of HFC32 and HFC125, HFC32 can be charged, collected, and recycled without concern for refrigerant composition since HFC32 is a single refrigerant.
  • *4 Countries operating under Article 5 of the Montreal Protocol may have free access concerning the manufacture, sale, and export of manufactured goods in those countries. (However, the waiver excludes countries that were not originally drafted as Article 5 Countries but later changed to developing countries.)
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