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Relative humidity: our first ally in the invisible war against bacteria

Every day, an invisible war is waged in hospitals and healthcare facilities whose outcome is crucial for people’s lives. On one side, the vast number of bacteria and viruses that are omnipresent in such places, being brought inside by sick patients, visitors and even the medical personnel, and that reproduce very quickly and are often able to resist the most common antibiotic...
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Which refrigerants are allowed worldwide on stand-alone units?

Undoubtedly, the phasing out of HFC refrigerants has already started. The prices of high GWP refrigerants are gradually rising while availability is decreasing. For instance, Honeywell announced a few days ago that they are going to stop selling R-404A and R-507 in Europe . At the same time, Chemours has recently announced consecutive monthly price rises of 25% and 30% for high GWP...
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New regulation on hospital humidification: cheap and clean, is it possible?

Air conditioning systems, including humidification, account for a major part of hospital daily running costs. Achieving energy and cost savings on these systems can bring considerable relief to hospital budgets, which often have to respond to public spending cuts and challenging energy consumption targets. The important question is therefore: can the need for humidification in...
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EuroShop 2017, the challenge of natural refrigerants

The fiftieth Euroshop held last March in Düsseldorf was the biggest in the event’s history. The organisers have announced record numbers: more than 113,000 visitors, a total of 2,368 companies exhibiting, 18 halls occupied and a net exhibition area of 127,000 m 2.   As regards commercial refrigeration, the sector I know best and have been dealing with for many years now, the...
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Humidity control in museums and libraries

The materials used to make the conserved artworks are the same as those already examined: canvas, wood, paper, parchment; nonetheless, the conservation of these requires limits that are much stricter than those relating to the material alone. An alteration in the dimensions of the canvas of a painting may cause the paint to peel; the same effect with wood may produce cracks in the...
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Ecodesign and Energy Labelling: making products smarter

The beginning of the 21st century. We are living in an era in which technology is progressing in leaps and bounds. This means that the concept of “best technology available” is constantly changing . That’s good news for consumers, because products are more and more efficient, which is very helpful when it’s time to pay the electricity bill. It’s also great news for the environment, as CO2...
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Vegas! So dry, so nice. Or is it?

Las Vegas, Nevada, the city of fun, gambling, good food and many, many wonderful shops inside glittering hotels! I spent there a few days there for the 2017 ASHRAE Winter Conference at the end of January, and indeed I enjoyed it. The seminars and conferences were very helpful and instructive. The weather was great, with the sun shining, blue skies and temperatures around 18 °C / 64 °F;...
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What was the HVAC/R sector talking about in Madrid?

Two weeks ago I was lucky to attend the Climatización y Refrigeración show in Madrid. It was exciting to once again see how our HVAC/R sector is not only thriving, but extremely active in the development of new solutions that the market is demanding. As predicted, this time the trends are mostly being driven by standards and regulations, specifically F-gas and Ecodesign in...
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Pros and Cons of Hydrocarbons as Refrigerants

Brief history of CFCs, HCFCs, HFCs, HFOs and natural refrigerants The damage caused by chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) to the ozone layer led to the establishment of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. Enforced on 26 August 1989 and ratified by 197 countries, it replaced CFCs and HCFCs with other substances that have no...
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The materials used in artworks and their reactions to fluctuations in relative humidity

As seen in our post Artworks sensitivity to relative humidity , the characteristics of materials used to make artworks change according to the relative humidity of the surrounding air. In this post we will describe the impact of variations in humidity on the appearance and structure of such materials. Wood It is well known that wood has a significant moisture content , both...
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