WASHINGTON — Daikin Industries Ltd. announced it is offering companies worldwide free access to 93 patents to encourage them to develop and commercialize air conditioning, cooling, and heat pump equipment that uses HFC-32 as a single-component refrigerant.

Daikin’s action is aimed at encouraging manufacturers worldwide to adopt comfort cooling and heating technologies that use HFC-32, a refrigerant with a lower global warming potential (GWP) than commonly used refrigerants.

The company said HFC-32 (difluoromethane) is a next-generation refrigerant that addresses a range of environmental considerations in a balanced manner. It is a non-ozone depleting substance, is energy efficient, affordable, is easier to recycle, and has a GWP that is one-third of that of R-410A, the most commonly used refrigerant.

Daikin believes that these advantages make it the most balanced and promising next-generation refrigerant solution to reduce the environmental footprint of residential and commercial air conditioning, cooling, and heat pump equipment. If all presently used R-410A refrigerant would be replaced by HFC-32, the company said, the total CO2 equivalent impact of HFCs could be reduced by up to 24 percent in 2030, compared to business as usual scenarios.

“Daikin has been offering free access to these patents in emerging markets since 2011 to accelerate the phaseout of ozone-depleting refrigerants, such as HCFC-22,” said Shinya Okada, Daikin’s senior executive officer. “Given the urgent need to address climate change, Daikin believes that this is the right time to extend free access to certain HFC-32 equipment patents to manufacturers worldwide.”

There is no patent that covers the HFC-32 chemical itself and it is readily available from suppliers other than Daikin. This free access to certain patents allows manufacturers to utilize Daikin’s technologies for air conditioning, cooling, and heat pump equipment using HFC-32 single-component refrigerant.

“Sharing environmentally beneficial air conditioning technologies without royalty payments can speed up environmental gains at a time when fast action is essential for climate protection,” said Durwood Zaelke, president of the Institute for Governance & Sustainable Development. “Free access to patented technologies sets a powerful precedent for other companies aiming to be environmental champions.”

Companies interested in obtaining access to these patents should contact Daikin Legal at R32-op-legal@daikin.co.jp.

For more information, visit www.daikin.com.

Publication date: 9/11/2015

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