Refrigerant 22 (R-22 or MonoChloroDiFlouroMethane, CHClF2) is one of the most common refrigerants and is used in a wide variety of applications such as refrigeration, aerosol propellants, cleaning solvents, and foaming agents for plastics. This refrigerant is believed to be partially responsible for damaging the earth’s ozone layer and it’s use is being phased out over the next two decades. The ozone layer is a result of sunlight reacting with oxygen to produce a layer in the stratosphere more than 10 km above the earth’s surface. As R-22 refrigerant escapes from an AC system through leaks or is released into the atmosphere by other means, the R-22 molecule containing the chlorine atom (“monochloro”) rises in the atmosphere. Sunlight breaks down the R-22 molecule to yield a free chlorine radical (Cl-). The free chlorine radical combines with ozone (O3), decomposing it into normal oxygen (O2).
American design standards are legislated in the Uniform Mechanical Code or International Mechanical Code. In certain states, counties, or cities, either of these codes may be adopted and amended via various legislative processes. These codes are updated and published by the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) or the International Code Council (ICC) respectively, on a 3-year code development cycle. Typically, local building permit departments are charged with enforcement of these standards on private and certain public properties.
Absorption heat pumps are a kind of air-source heat pump, but they do not depend on electricity to power them. Instead, gas, solar power, or heated water is used as a main power source. An absorption pump dissolves ammonia gas in water, which gives off heat. Next, the water and ammonia mixture is depressurized to induce boiling, and the ammonia is boiled off, which absorbs heat from the outdoor air.
In 1758, Benjamin Franklin and John Hadley, a chemistry professor at Cambridge University, conducted an experiment to explore the principle of evaporation as a means to rapidly cool an object. Franklin and Hadley confirmed that evaporation of highly volatile liquids (such as alcohol and ether) could be used to drive down the temperature of an object past the freezing point of water. They conducted their experiment with the bulb of a mercury thermometer as their object and with a bellows used to speed up the evaporation. They lowered the temperature of the thermometer bulb down to −14 °C (7 °F) while the ambient temperature was 18 °C (64 °F). Franklin noted that, soon after they passed the freezing point of water 0 °C (32 °F), a thin film of ice formed on the surface of the thermometer's bulb and that the ice mass was about 6 mm (1⁄4 in) thick when they stopped the experiment upon reaching −14 °C (7 °F). Franklin concluded: "From this experiment one may see the possibility of freezing a man to death on a warm summer's day."
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