The Chillgard® VRF Refrigerant Leak Detector from MSA Safety provides advanced leak detection technology to protect the respiratory safety of building and facility occupants. It features integrated BACNet capability to be directly connected with any Building Management Systems (BMS).
Variable refrigerant flow (VRF) systems use pure refrigerant as the cooling and heating medium, versus the traditional four-pipe air conditioning method using hot and cold water. A typical VRF system consists of an outdoor condensing unit that conditions and circulates the refrigerant within buildings to multiple fan-coil units. A building could be conditioned by multiple VRF systems placed throughout a building and connected by pressurized pipes that convey the refrigerant for climate control.
Building systems using long refrigerant piping and many connections running throughout create the potential for refrigerant leaks, likely causing potential safety issues. If refrigerant leaks into occupied areas, there is risk of injury to occupants due to oxygen deficiency. Finding the areas with potential for highest leak concentration requires discerning both refrigerant quantity within the system and how the refrigerant will distribute should a leak occur. If a refrigeration system component or refrigerant line ruptures, the refrigerant is likely to leak rapidly into the occupied space.
The small Chillgard VRF Detectors are discretely placed nearby in building rooms and hallways and are suitable for areas such as universities, banks, offices, hotels, restaurants, strip malls, hospitals, nursing homes, and places of worship.
Chillgard VRF units can be installed to work independently, communicating directly to building management systems (BMS), or through BACnet MS/TP, Modbus RTU, or via analog. Digital communication adds the benefit of gas detection integration for a total building management and control solution.
Detectors should be installed on flat, interior surfaces located approximately 12″ to 18″ from floors where refrigerant will likely accumulate, as refrigerant gas is typically heavier than air. VRF detectors can also be installed in ceilings close to manifolds, coils, and valves that may be susceptible to leaks. Sensors should not be placed in areas where air does not circulate freely, such as behind doors or in corners.
Designed with MSA’s advanced photoacoustic infrared (PAIR) sensing technology, the Chillgard VRF Refrigerant Leak Detector operates with a stable zero baseline and minimized cross-sensitivities. PAIR technology eliminates sensor drift and allows operation for lengthy periods over temperatures ranging from 32°F to 140°F, and 0% to 95% relative humidity levels without adjustment or maintenance.
The PAIR sensors in Chillgard Detectors feature a wide operating range of 0 ppm to 1,000 ppm, with a minimum detection level of 25 ppm and alarming pre-set at 50 ppm, and with repeatability of ±10 ppm at 50 ppm. T50 response time is less than 240 seconds. Approvals include CSA, UL, IEC, and CE with REACH/RoHS compliance.
The Chillgard VRF Refrigerant Leak Detector has no moving parts and only an annual calibration check is recommended. It consists of two basic parts: the cover that incorporates electronics with sensing elements, and the base. Power requirements are 24 VDC/VAC.