It is not unusual for decades to pass in between chiller purchases.
In today’s world where technology changes at such a rapid pace that is one hell of a long time. Moreover, it is not a decision that can be taken lightly as it is a serious financial commitment.
Most organisations reach a point where they do not have a choice, an outdated chiller requires constant maintenance and a lot of attention to avoid outages.
Sourcing replacement parts can also be a problem.
The main aim is to avoid impacting business operations but as we all know, a new installation can create serious disruptions.
Even the simple task of getting the old chiller out and a new one in can be a challenge.
Despite this, chiller replacement projects are usually worthwhile because today’s newer chillers are far more energy efficient than those that were around decades ago.
Cost savings and improved reliability will make a big difference to the bottom line, not to mention the other benefits that will come from improved operating efficiencies.
According to research firm Reports and Data one of the biggest trends taking place in the market today is the growth of modular chillers, especially in the Asia Pacific region.
The research firm valued the modular chiller market at $US2.52 billion in 2019.
However, the research firm predicts the market will grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 5.8 per cent through to 2027.
By then the market will be worth $US3.97 billion.
“The market is witnessing an expanded interest from the power generation industry because of its ability to cool and recover heat from the cooling module to increase the cooling system's overall efficiency,” according to its latest research report.
“They are ideal for space cooling and process cooling in commercial, residential, and industrial applications as they are dependable, cost-effective, and are available in water-cooled or air-cooled types ranging in size from 20 to 60 nominal tonnes each.
“Also, they are compact in format, energy-efficient, and flexible in function and can be connected to 12 units in parallel to increase the overall cooling capacity of the chiller systems.”
The most significant advantage of modular chillers is 'modularity,' – which means when cooling requirements are low, operators can shut down any unit and switch to any number of units when the need is high. This also means reduced downtime.
“In the HVAC industry, the demand for modular chillers has gained momentum as it is lighter, more efficient, and lowers the required volume of refrigerant compared to other heat exchangers,” the Reports and Data research report said.
“Modular chillers are widely used for efficient heat transfer between the refrigerant and air in AC systems and heat pumps. Besides, modular chillers are used in residential and commercial refrigeration applications, due to compact design, lightweight, and lower hold-up volume.”
Almost a quarter of all electricity generated in Australia is used to power HVACR systems, and around 80 per cent of this electricity is generated using fossil fuels.
Through its energy use, HVACR contributes significantly to the country’s emissions. HVAC systems use 65 per cent of a buildings energy use with 25-35 per cent consumed by chillers producing chilled water for air conditioning. As a result, chillers are a critically important part of any energy efficiency strategy.
According to the Department of Environment Fact Sheet, poor maintenance can increase chiller power consumption by as much as 20 per cent.