STILLWATER, OK - The expo portion of the International Ground Source Heat Pump Association (IGSHPA) Technical Conference and Expo has been growing steadily, from five exhibitors at the first event just a few years ago to 31 this year.

This is still a small show relative to many other association expos. But, despite being small, some of the major players in the industry were present to display their heat pump wares. This could be another indicator of the growth potential of this technology.

The Water-Source Comfort System Business Unit of The Trane Company (Waco, TX) showed its new GEHA horizontal and GEVA vertical water-source comfort systems. Available in capacities from 0.5 to 5 tons, the units feature a modular platform that uses similar parts and assemblies throughout the product line. The cabinet front allows service access to all controls and refrigeration circuitry.

Jaa Aguilar, information designer, noted that both models offer a variety of return and supply air combinations that are field convertible. Hanging brackets are within the chamfered corners of the horizontal unit, eliminating added height, width, or length. Isolation for the bracket is provided by a neoprene rubber grommet.

The drain pan is plastic, noncorrosive, and positively sloped for proper drainage.

Focus On Serviceability

Titian Burris of ClimateMaster (Oklahoma City, OK) showed the company's newest commercial water-source heat pump, the Genesis GR Series.

The GR units offer high efficiency, noise reduction, flexibility, and serviceability. The company says it has the quietest unit available at the broadest range of operation. Eleven sizes, each with four horizontal airflow patterns and four vertical airflow patterns available, provide a flexible system.

Contractors will appreciate the blower inlet rings that allow servicing of the motor and blower wheel without removing the blower housing. Removable panels provide access from three sides of the compressor section.

Daniel Ellis, president of ClimateMaster, also was working in his capacity as chairman of the Advisory Council to IGSHPA. In addition, he chairs a working group in the International Standards Organization (ISO) on behalf of ARI, which recently established two international standards for water-source heat pumps.

WaterFurnace International, Inc. (Fort Wayne, IN), offers a number of residential products, including its Premiere®2 high-efficiency, single- and two-speed models, the Synergy3¿ which provides forced-air heating, cooling, and hot water for radiant floors; and the Spectra® in single-speed units, water-to-water units, and split systems.

Also available is the Northern Leader¿, which is specifically designed for colder, northern climates.

Commercial systems include Premier2 and Spectra units, as well as console and rooftop models.

Getting Friendly With The Environment

At the booth of FHP Manufacturing Co. (Ft. Lauder-dale, FL) - also known as Florida Heat Pump - Chris Smith, vice president, sales and marketing, introduced the company's EV Series Enviromiser heat pumps.

Available in vertical, counterflow, and horizontal models from 2 to 6 tons, these units have been designed to use environmentally friendly R-410A. Besides being chlorine free, R-410A also has unique heat transfer characteristics that make it highly efficient.

The company's GT Series geo-thermal units feature an oversized blower with dynamically balanced wheel for quiet operation and an oversized, rifled copper tube-lanced aluminum fin, air-to-refrigerant heat exchanger for higher efficiency. To ensure serviceability, the heat recovery package is attached to the side of the unit to keep refrigerant piping simple and the components easy to access.

Tom Miller, president of Geo-Flo Products Corp. (Blooming-ton, IN), displayed his firm's geo-thermal loop pump modules. Supplied fully assembled and leak tested, they are offered with a choice of four different Grundfos circulators. They are designed for quick installation using standard NPT connections.

Miller also previewed a set of new plastic fittings that have just been developed. The fittings require no wrenches to tighten; the user just needs to hand tighten for secure, leak-free connections, he said. Currently set for field testing, the product will be available later this year.