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Refrigerant Emissions and Leakage in the UK - Feedback from the REAL Zero Project


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Refrigerant Emissions and Leakage in the UK - Feedback from the REAL Zero Project

A paper was presented on behalf of the IOR at the International Institute of Refrigeration 1st Workshop on Refrigerant Charge Reduction, at Cemagref Antony, France in 2009. The paper title is "Real Zero – Refrigerant Emissions and Leakage in UK- Feedback from a UK Project". 

The paper describes the results of a project on refrigerant charge containment and emissions associated with refrigerant leakage in the UK. The project titled REAL Zero (Refrigerant Emissions and Leakage – Zero), led by the UK's Institute of Refrigeration is a 12 month research project carried out in partnership between industry and academia, covering refrigeration systems using halocarbon refrigerants (specifically HFCs and HCFCs).

The project identified technical and commercial reasons for refrigerant leakage and developed a programme to address these. One activity was to investigate 72 commercial RAC systems and use these to provide site specific data on refrigerant leakage in a range of applications. The REAL Zero site surveys found leaks on 33 systems and the main reasons for leakage were identified. According to the available F Gas logs, 46 of these systems had experienced a leak over the previous 12 to 18 months.

From these studies and with input from the project's consultants, generic information has been collated and used to develop guidance notes and training material. The project has also developed two web based tools to enable refrigerant usage to be logged and the cost of leakage to be calculated in environmental and economic terms. This paper describes the investigations that have taken place, the feedback from the case studies, the generic conclusions reached and the project outputs.