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Ingersoll Rand: Trane Series E CenTraVac Water Chiller

An improvement on existing technology using varying attributes of other products and design. Has wider applicability for value across other industries. Such product development and design should be applauded.

The Trane Series E CenTraVac water chiller from the industrial company Ingersoll Rand is a large capacity unit that produces chilled water for commercial and industrial applications worldwide. New legislation in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia requires the use of products with refrigerants that dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Series E chiller was designed to help customers meet these requirements for large chilled water applications, while delivering improved efficiency, at both the unit and system level.

The Series E chiller uses a new low pressure, non-flammable refrigerant called R-1233zd(E), which has an ultra-low global warming potential of less than 1 and enables best-in-class efficiency, according to Ingersoll Rand. This reduces impacts to the environment, resulting in lower greenhouse gas emissions compared to current chiller designs. The refrigerant also enables the use of a direct drive centrifugal compressor with refrigerant economizer to exceed other chiller offerings by over 10% in overall unit efficiency.

The direct drive, multi-stage centrifugal compressor enables a wide operating range so the chiller can be utilized for comfort and industrial cooling as well as system designs like thermal storage or heat recovery, further reducing overall energy usage. In addition, the design eliminates almost all risk of refrigerant leakage because the chiller operates in a vacuum.

A versatile design means the chiller can meet the need for standard cooling as well as for energy-saving system options like thermal storage or heat recovery, which are becoming more common with power plant infrastructures that leverage photovoltaics and wind turbines.

The Series E chiller has earned product-specific Type III Environmental Product Declaration registration, which provides third party verification of its environmental impacts by Underwriters Laboratories in accordance with ISO 14025. A life cycle assessment of the Series E chiller considered all phases of an expected 25-year service life from upstream production of raw materials to the final recycling and disposal of the unit at the end of its service life.

Two high-profile government projects have used the chiller to meet their sustainability objectives without compromising efficiency and system requirements: Venice’s Marco Polo Airport Expansion and France’s Eurotunnel Chiller Plant. In both cases, local government agencies evaluated other chiller options with low-GWP refrigerants, but none met the low life cycle costs needed for the projects, Ingersoll Rand says.