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Recycled AC cuts emissions

18 March, 2010

New Curtin University of Technology research has shown that it may be possible for business to save the environment and money at the same time by remanufacturing compressors for commercial use.

Dr Wahidul Biswas and Associate Professor Michele Rosano, of Curtin's Centre for Cleaner Production, have completed a study highlighting the benefits of using a re-manufactured compressor in a large-scale fridge or air conditioner.

Dr Biswas said remanufacturing a compressor reduced carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by almost 1.5 tonnes and could can save a business nearly $7000.

This reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is roughly equivalent to taking a small car off the road.

"This is because re-manufacturing a compressor produces about 89-93 per cent less CO2 emissions than making a new one," said Dr Biswas.

About 1 590kg of CO2 is emitted from the production of a new 15kW compressor that weighs 167kg.

Research showed that between half and 99 per cent of all parts can be reused through cleaning, washing and machining operations. This results in CO2 emissions of about 117kg.

"These are major savings," Dr Biswas said.

"What this shows is that there are ways to reduce CO2 emissions that are not only affordable, but they actually save business money."

Commissioned by Recom Engineering, the research was independently conducted by Curtin's Centre for Cleaner Production.

The goal of the research was to determine the carbon footprint associated with both a new and re-manufactured 15kW compressor for commercial refrigerators and air conditioners, often used in the supermarket industry and other large commercial and industrial operations.

Source: Curtin University of Technology

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