ATLANTA — The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) here is writing a new voluntary standard for supermarket refrigeration equipment aimed at reducing the perennial problem of refrigerant leaks.
A draft of the standard will be submitted for public review next year, said Warren Beeton, vice president of engineering, Emerson Climate Technologies Refrigeration Division, Sidney, Ohio, who chairs the committee writing the standard.
“The standard takes best practices and incorporates them into a document,” said Beeton. The intent is to help manufacturers “make systems more robust and leak-tight so they are easier to maintain and operate without incurring leaks.”
Manufacturers could voluntarily agree to design equipment to meet the standard, though retailers could refer to the standard in their procurement specifications, noted Beeton. States such as California could specify the standard as part of carbon dioxide emission regulations, he said.
Retailers can also minimize leaks through proper installation and maintenance of equipment, said Beeton. The ASHRAE committee is therefore looking at such issues as field-installed refrigerant piping, leak monitoring and inspections, retrofits, and maintenance procedures. “All phases of the process, including design, installation, maintenance and refrigerant handling, are being addressed in the standard,” he said.