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Urban Energy Lab 4.0 – Refrigerant Lab

Mathieustraße 10, 52074 Aachen, Germany
  • All projects
  • Europe
  • Posted 4 weeks ago

•The Refrigerant Lab is a part of the EU-funded Project: Urban Energy Lab 4.0 (UEL)

•Within the UEL (https://www.uel4-0.de/) six RWTH Institutes experimentally investigate supply concepts of future cities focusing on big data methods and sector coupling strategies

•Especially the Refrigerant Lab aims for an efficient, economic and ecologic heat supply of buildings.

•To meet ecologic goals in the building sector, there is an urgent need to replace conventional technologies by those that obtain renewable energy sources. Heat pumps are a sustainable solution, if their direct and indirect emissions as well as their costs decrease. Both correlate to the choice of the refrigerant and its efficiency in the heat pump during operation.

•Hence, an about 100 m² lab was converted to a highly innovative refrigerant laboratory at RWTH Aachen to investigate the performance of refrigerants in heat pumps and to simplify the choice of optimal refrigerants.

•The lab has very strict requirements regarding safety issues due to the flammability of promising refrigerants. These requirements are all satisfied according to pertinent standards (like DIN EN 378, DIN EN 50156) which are proven by TÜV.

•In the lab there are different test stands to assess the performance of refrigerants in heat pumps. We design and build up component test stands to evaluate compressors and expansion valves as well as a Hardware-in-the-Loop facility to operate and investigate internally developed air-source and ground-source heat pumps with low GWP refrigerants.

•To simplify the development of innovative heat pump systems and therefore to decrease costs and increase the market penetration of heat pumps in the future, the concepts of the laboratory as well as of all test stands will be published.

•The project has rigorous environmental impact, because it shows in experiments the emission reduction potential of heat pump systems in the building sector depending on the refrigerant. In addition, the publication of all concepts enable further companies (focusing medium-sized companies) to investigate heat pumps and their components with flammable refrigerants, which has an accelerating effect on the decarbonization of buildings.

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