Response to Climate Change
To reduce global warming worldwide, it is crucial to spread the use of highly energy efficient products, such as those using inverters, to all countries. Daikin is developing affordable air conditioners for Southeast Asian countries, where market penetration is still low. We are also working to support the creation of a mechanism to assess the energy performance of inverter models in Southeast Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and other areas.
Inverters are frequency conversion devices that control electrical voltage, current, and frequency. Inverters precisely control the compressor motor, the heart of an air conditioner. Furthermore, in addition to having modified conventional motors and heat exchangers, inverter air conditioners use approximately 58% less energy than non-inverter models.
The Daikin Group aims to spread the use of highly energy-efficient inverter products so that consumers use less energy during air conditioner operation and thus emit less CO2.
Because inverter products are more expensive than non-inverter products, they have been slow to achieve market penetration in Southeast Asia. However, in fiscal 2014, we developed an inverter air conditioner at a relatively low price especially for the Asian cooling-only air conditioner market. Such products are achieving greater market penetration due to factors including stricter energy efficiency standards and rising energy awareness among the general public stemming from rising electricity prices in Southeast Asia.
To help promote the spread of inverter products, we are in the process of creating mechanisms to evaluate their energy-efficiency performance. In the past, the most common index for evaluating an air conditioner's energy-efficiency performance was Coefficient of Performance (COP), under which the amount of energy consumed was calculated at a fixed efficiency without adjusting for air temperature changes. However, COP cannot be used to properly evaluate the performance of inverter products, which operate at an optimal level depending on the changes in ambient temperature. Therefore, Japan's air conditioner industry has led calls for a switch to using Annual Performance Factor (APF), and since 2013 APF has been used in ISO standards.
In emerging countries, where APF is starting to come into use, Daikin is working with the Japanese government and industry groups to get APF adopted in Latin America, the Middle East and other areas as the industry standard and to introduce indicators and standards as well as create energy labelling systems as part of support for creating evaluation standards.
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