The main causes affecting the growth of air conditioning and refrigeration systems
The commercial and industrial refrigeration and air conditioning markets have been growing steadily for 20 years and are destined to increase.
The main causes that will affect this growth in the near future are:
The process of electrification / decommissioning of heating by combustion, which will have to be replaced with heat pumps and heat recovery.
The significant growth of data centre due to localization and data protection in various countries, growth of applications with high consumption of calculation (artificial intelligence, augmented reality, Metaverse, cryptocurrency mining, industry 4.0).
The growth of investments in air conditioning for cultural processes, urbanization phenomena, global warming, work compliance (correlated environment).
The replacement of systems caused by new regulations that are more attentive to climate (phase off of old refrigerants, solutions with reduced refrigerant charge).
The replacement of systems due to the growing attention paid to electricity consumption (new electronic solutions, heat recovery) and water saving (closed circuit solutions).
Refrigeration is the process through which we try to obtain a controlled decrease in the temperature of fluids or bodies in general.
In the food industry, refrigeration is used for the temporary storage of perishable goods and can reach temperatures down to -60°C. This market represents one of the most delicate applications of refrigeration, as it is essential to slow down the bacterial proliferation in food and allow to preserve its organoleptic properties intact, extending the storage time.
Different types of food require to be kept at specific temperatures in order to be best preserved:
- from 0°C to 4°C: aged cheeses, drinks (beer, wine, fruit juices, soft drinks), cured meats and gastronomy products in general;
- 0°C: meat, fish, fruit, vegetables and fresh dairy products;
- from -1°C to -25°C: ice creams and all foods produced with freezing or more often than deep freezing which greatly increase the storage time.
Air conditioning consists in the regulation of the temperature and humidity of the air in large closed environments such as hospitals, hotels, shopping centres, theatres, warehouses, etc.
Precision air coditioning is used in all applications where cooling solutions must provide extremely strict temperature, humidity control and optimal air filtration. It is reserved for destined to delicate environments such as operating theatres, clean rooms, computer and telephony centres.
Process cooling for industrial applications and “power generation” instead consists in the cooling of processes that produce heat that must be disposed of or recovered, among these : energy production (engines, turbines, ORC, wind power), energy distribution (power plants) , plastic molding, fluid pumping, metal fabrication and data centres above all.