Split Systems Get High-Tech Add-Ons

January 22, 2003
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NUREMBURG, Germany — Air conditioning in Europe usually means split systems. The technology has been moving to a larger scale, using sophisticated components for operation and monitoring. New developments in A/C technology were on display at the most recent International Trade Fair for Refrigeration, Air Conditioning, and Ventilation (in German, Internationale Facfhmesse Kalte, Klima, Luftung, or IKK). IKK is one of Europe’s largest trade shows, with more than 800 exhibitors and 20,000 attendees. A number of manufacturers touted the high-tech add-ons to their A/C systems on display.

Mitsubishi Electric Europe B.V. (Germany) displayed a central controller, the G-50A, with Web server functions. The LCD allows the monitoring and operating of up to 50 individual or grouped indoor air conditioning units. It can also be connected to a local Intranet.

Daikin (England) showed the VRV-L Series, which uses R-407C in 5- to 10-hp models. Also shown was the R-407C inverter-controlled, VRV plus air conditioner designed for higher-capacity installations. The model is said to support up to 32 indoor fancoil units on a single circuit.

Zenith Air (France) showed cassette splits with mechanicals housed in a suspended ceiling with an infrared remote control. The company also showed a multi-split with just one outdoor unit for two, three, or four indoor units, allowing for adaptability, depending on the needs of the application.

Saunier Duval (Spain) showed under-ceiling-mounted units as well as floor-mounted units. The company said they can be mounted vertically or horizontally. Space is allowed for a condensate pump.

Air conditioning units with direct expansion coils were shown by Emicon (Italy). The company said the technology is targeted for technology centers, computer processing centers, and related environments. The units use scroll compressors, a valve on the gas discharge line, crankcase heaters if necessary, centrifugal fans directly coupled to a low-rpm motor, and cleanable air filters.

Samsung (Korea) used the show to unveil its 2003 split and window-type units, as well as built-in and floor-standing types.

The Italian company Aermec paid as much attention to the design of its Omnia unit as it did to some of its unusual technological innovations. The Omnia “is a real decoration element designed by Giugiaro,” the company said. The unit provides heat when needed, but also operates as an air conditioner in the summer. The centrifugal fan is mounted on the rear of the unit. The heat exchanger has reversible hydraulic connections.

As part of the environmental push common in Europe, Airned (the Netherlands) showed air conditioners running on propane, and a central air cooler with indoor and outdoor sections in one unit for homes and small offices.

Tadiran (Israel) promoted its environmental concern with its “Green Planet” products using HFCs 410A and 407C. The company also highlighted “Air-Care,” which it described as “a patented antibacterial Zeolite filtering system.”

Publication date: 01/27/2003

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