Chemours: How Refrigerants Are Crucial to Our Everyday Lives and Can Contribute to Reducing Our Environmental Footprint

Nov 14, 2022 9:00 AM ET

While refrigerants are crucial to many aspects of our modern lives, they might not be something that comes to mind as you go about your day. Whether it’s residential heating and cooling, mobile air conditioning, the refrigerated transportation of food or pharmaceuticals , or the shelf life of your groceries, refrigerants are engrained into our everyday lives. They make all of this possible.

Let's walk through a typical day to see how refrigerants support our everyday lives.

Meet The Smiths

The Smiths start their day by enjoying a cup of coffee in their climate-controlled home. It's a cool morning, but their comfort is made possible by an efficient heat pump that utilizes a high-performance refrigerant. The temperature outside is heating up, so the Smiths decide to drive to the supermarket to pick up tonight's dinner.

The car's air conditioning system ensure the ideal cabin temperature as they make their way through town, but that's not the only temperature control in the car. Their electric vehicle's battery and electronics require thermal management to ensure the best temperature during operation and recharging.

They arrive at the local store to find tonight’s meal. What would a supermarket be without refrigerants to preserve the quality and shelf life of the food and beverages we consume? But do you know how the food you eat gets to the supermarket shelf?

Transport refrigeration makes it possible to move temperature-sensitive items without spoiling. Refrigeration is onboard of many vessels, like fishing boats or refrigerated container ships, allowing them to travel long distances while maintaining the required temperature for the cargo. But a freshly caught fish isn't always quite ready for the trip to the supermarket; it may need to go through processing and packaging before being distributed.

This is just one example of how industrial refrigeration plays a major role in food processing. After processing, while some of the fish goes to refrigerated storage to be distributed later, the rest is loaded onto refrigerated trucks and delivered to stores, whether across the country or just across town. Refrigerants enable us to keep our favorite foods cold on every step of their journey.

Refrigerants make our lives better in many ways. Yet, in all of these applications, new-generation refrigerants are required to transition to systems with a lower environmental impact as we commit to reducing carbon emissions.

Low Global Warming Potential Opteon™ Refrigerants

As regulating bodies worldwide lead the industry towards more stringent standards on the use of global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants, more and more businesses are opting to replace their legacy refrigerants with lower GWP solutions.

GWP is a measure of greenhouse gas’s potential to trap heat if released into the atmosphere compared to carbon dioxide (CO2), which has been assigned a GWP reference value of 1. For example, common legacy HFC refrigerants like R-410A and R-404A have GWP of approximately 2,000 and 4,000, respectively. On the other hand, HFO refrigerants have a much lower GWP. For example, R-1234yf has a GWP (AR5) of <1.

Chemours’ Opteon™ refrigerants deliver the optimal balance of performance and environmental sustainability. They allow end users to transition to lower GWP solutions, while providing effective performance and operating efficiencies compared to other alternatives.

Refrigerants make everyday life better for all of us. And with refrigeration technology becoming more energy-efficient, Opteon™ products are crucial in transitioning to systems with lower environmental impact.