While some people look forward to enjoying the summer sun and the comfort of cool, air-conditioned rooms, others dread their high summer energy costs. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) claims that air conditioners across the United States consume an estimated 1.28 quadrillion British thermal units, almost 39 million homes’ electricity use in a year. In homes, air conditioning alone makes up 9 percent of a home’s total energy use.
Furthermore, most conventional air conditioners use fluorocarbon refrigerants as a coolant that can easily affect the cooling system’s efficiency and damage the environment when they leak. Thankfully, AC manufacturers are developing new air conditioning technologies to improve their systems’ efficiency and performance. This article talks about the latest developments in air conditioner coolant technologies.
Advanced Heat Exchanger
This technology helps to reduce the risk of leakage of the refrigerant by minimizing joints. Compared to the conventional air conditioners, the latest systems that have incorporated this technology have minimized their joints by about 90 percent. This means that their refrigerant remains where it’s supposed to be, helping to keep homes cool and your utility bills down.
Combination of Water Heater, AC, and Dehumidifier
The University of Florida has developed a prototype that combines an air conditioner, water heater, and dehumidifier to improve the efficiency of your system’s transfer of hot and cold air. This technology has improved air conditioning, dehumidification, and water heating control in homes, resulting in improved comfort and reduced energy bills.
Membrane-Based Rooftop Air Conditioners
Daisy Analytics in Florida, in conjunction with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), has developed a new air conditioner that is based on rooftop membranes. This AC uses water as a refrigerant as opposed to the traditional chemicals. This coolant technology has proved to be the perfect option for homeowners who want to stay cool on the sweltering, humid summer days and nights. It also helps you to cut down your home’s energy consumption by 30-50 percent.
Electrocaloric, Solid-State Technology
In Connecticut, the United Technologies Research Center has developed a heat pump that uses electrocaloric, solid-state technology to keep your home cool without using the traditional chemical refrigerants. This technology has proved to be quite perfect for both residential and commercial buildings. It is also quitter than the conventional ACs and reduces your energy bills by about 25 percent. This technology has also proved to be reasonably reliable.
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