Performance Evaluation of Two Azeotropic Refrigerant Mixtures of HFC-134a With R-290 (Propane) and R-600a (Isobutane)

[+] Author and Article Information
M. S. Kim, W. J. Mulroy, D. A. Didion

Thermal Machinery Group, Building Environment Division, Building and Fire Research Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD 20899

J. Energy Resour. Technol 116(2), 148-154 (Jun 01, 1994) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2906020 History: Received July 15, 1993; Revised February 24, 1994; Online April 16, 2008


The reduction in chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) and hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) production and the scheduled phase-out of these ozone-depleting refrigerants require the development and determination of environmentally safe refrigerants for use in heat pumps, water chillers, air conditioners, and refrigerators. This paper presents a performance evaluation of a generic heat pump with two azeotropic refrigerant mixtures of HFC-134a (1,1,1,2-tetrafluoroethane) with R-290 (propane) and R-600a (isobutane); R-290/134a (45/55 by mass percentage) and R-134a/600a (80/20 by mass percentage). The performance characteristics of the azeotropes were compared with pure CFC-12, HFC-134a, HCFC-22, and R-290 at the high temperature cooling and heating conditions including those using liquid-line/suction-line heat exchange. The coefficient of performance of R-290/134a is lower than that of HCFC-22 and R-290, and R-134a/600a shows higher coefficient of performance than CFC-12 and HFC-134a. The capacity for R-290/134a is higher than that for HCFC-22 and R-290, and R-134a/600a exhibits higher system capacity than CFC-12 and HFC-134a. Experimental results show that the discharge temperatures of the studied azeotropic mixtures are lower than those of the pure refrigerants, CFC-12 and HCFC-22.

Copyright © 1994 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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