Words have meaning, and understanding the specific meaning of key words promotes more effective communication in an industry such as HVAC or refrigeration.
What, exactly, is refrigeration? What is a cold chain?
basic terminology used in HVAC&R industry
ASHRAE and the International Institute of Refrigeration (IIR) have been working to establish new definitions for five keywords in the refrigeration field. In addition to refrigeration and cold chain, the organizations have also agreed on definitions for cooling, chilling, and freezing. The “new” definitions are the result of more than a year of discussions and were established to clarify globally the meaning of basic terminology used in the HVAC&R industry.
“It was important that the differences that might exist in these definitions between the IIR and ASHRAE be erased for more consistency,” says Jean-Luc Dupont, head of the Department of Scientific and Technical Information of the International Institute of Refrigeration (IIR), an independent intergovernmental science and technology-based organization that promotes knowledge of all refrigeration fields. The IIR includes more than 400 experts in 58 countries. “It now seems important for us to reach even greater harmonization on an international level to establish universal definitions,” Dupont adds.
contributions of IIR
ASHRAE is an American association seeking to advance heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration design and construction
“The new definitions will help those within our industry, as well as the general public, gain a clearer understanding of important refrigeration keywords that are often misused or too broadly defined,” said ASHRAE President Sheila J. Hayter. ASHRAE (the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers) is an American professional association seeking to advance heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration systems design and construction. ASHRAE has more than 57,000 members in more than 132 countries worldwide.
“We appreciate the contributions of IIR and anticipate that the adoption of these definitions will be positive.” To avoid confusion, the official definitions are:
- Cooling: (1) Removal of heat, usually resulting in a lower temperature and/or phase change; (2) Lowering temperature
- Refrigeration: (1) Cooling of a space, substance or system to lower and/or maintain its temperature below the ambient one (removed heat is rejected at a higher temperature); (2) Artificial cooling
- Chilling: Cooling of a substance without freezing it
- Freezing: Solidification phase change of a liquid or the liquid content of a substance, usually due to cooling
- Cold Chain: Series of actions and equipment applied to maintain a product within a specified low-temperature range from harvest/production to consumption
IIR has called on all national and regional organizations and associations to adopt and disseminate the new definitions. The definitions will be included in ASHRAE Terminology, its free comprehensive online glossary of more than 3,700 terms and definitions related to the built environment, with a focus on heating, ventilating, air conditioning, and refrigeration (HVAC&R), as well as building envelope, electrical, lighting, water and energy use, and measurement terms.