SEER is related to the coefficient of performance (COP) commonly used in thermodynamics and also to the Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER). The EER is the efficiency rating for the equipment at a particular pair of external and internal temperatures, while SEER is calculated over a whole range of external temperatures (i.e., the temperature distribution for the geographical location of the SEER test). SEER is unusual in that it is composed of an Imperial unit divided by an SI unit. The COP is a ratio with the same metric units of energy (joules) in both the numerator and denominator. They cancel out, leaving a dimensionless quantity. Formulas for the approximate conversion between SEER and EER or COP are available.
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Refrigeration air conditioning equipment usually reduces the absolute humidity of the air processed by the system. The relatively cold (below the dewpoint) evaporator coil condenses water vapor from the processed air, much like an ice-cold drink will condense water on the outside of a glass. Therefore, water vapor is removed from the cooled air and the relative humidity in the room is lowered. The water is usually sent to a drain or may simply drip onto the ground outdoors. The heat is rejected by the condenser which is located outside of room to be cooled.
Poorly maintained water cooling towers can promote the growth and spread of microorganisms, such as Legionella pneumophila, the infectious agent responsible for Legionnaires' disease, or thermophilic actinomycetes. As long as the cooling tower is kept clean (usually by means of a chlorine treatment), these health hazards can be avoided or reduced. Excessive air conditioning can have a negative effect on skin, causing it to dry out, and can also cause dehydration.
Heaters are appliances whose purpose is to generate heat (i.e. warmth) for the building. This can be done via central heating. Such a system contains a boiler, furnace, or heat pump to heat water, steam, or air in a central location such as a furnace room in a home, or a mechanical room in a large building. The heat can be transferred by convection, conduction, or radiation.
The re-processing and upgrading of refrigerant by filtering, drying, distillation and sometimes chemical treatment of the recovered refrigerant. The re-processed substance will require laboratory analysis to verify that it meets a specific quality standard, normally that of new refrigerant. This normally involves processing “off-site” at a re-processing or a refrigerant manufacturing facility.
HVAC is an important part of residential structures such as single family homes, apartment buildings, hotels and senior living facilities, medium to large industrial and office buildings such as skyscrapers and hospitals, on ships and submarines, and in marine environments, where safe and healthy building conditions are regulated with respect to temperature and humidity, using fresh air from outdoors.