APRIL 2023 Kentucky Lake Section Meeting
Low Global Warming Potential (GWP) Refrigerants: How to Stay Cool without Warming the Planet
Featuring Michael Klimek, P.E.
Lead Process Technology Engineer
Arkema Inc., Calvert City KY Plant
Thursday, April 20th
at UT Martin
Latimer-Smith STEM Building
203 Hurt Street / Martin, TN 38238
Undergraduate Poster Session 5:30–6:30PM
Dinner Catered by Sodexo
Abstract: Refrigerants are the working fluid used in a refrigeration cycle and they impact both safety and performance. In the early 20th century, refrigerants were often flammable, toxic, or both. Nonflammable and nontoxic Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC’s) greatly improved the safety of air conditioning and refrigeration, enabling them to quickly become widespread. However, CFC’s damage the ozone layer and have a high GWP. Alternative hydrofluorocarbons (HFC’s) were later developed, which are non-ozone depleting, but often have relatively high GWP’s. Lower GWP HFC’s and ultra-low GWP Hydrofluoroolefins (HFO’s) are now being produced to reduce the impact on the climate, while still providing comparable safety and performance.
Arkema has been a leader in the transition to low and ultra-low GWP refrigerants. The Calvert City, KY plant produces the low GWP refrigerant Forane® 32, and the plant is building capacity for 15 kt/yr Forane ® 1233zd, an ultra-low GWP refrigerant. Both the history of refrigerants and some of the more recent innovations in industry and at Arkema will be discussed.