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9.1 Introduction

Air conditioning and refrigeration consume significant amount of energy in buildings and in process industries. The energy consumed in air conditioning and refrigeration systems is sensitive to load changes, seasonal variations, operation and maintenance, ambient conditions etc. Hence the performance evaluation will have to take into account to the extent possible all these factors.

9.2 Purpose of the Performance Test

The purpose of performance assessment is to verify the performance of a refrigeration system by using field measurements. The test will measure net cooling capacity (tons of refrigeration) and energy requirements, at the actual operating conditions. The objective of the test is to estimate the energy consumption at actual load vis-à-vis design conditions.

9.3 Performance Terms and Definitions

Tons of refrigeration (TR) :
One ton of refrigeration is the amount of cooling obtained by one ton of ice melting in one day: 3024 kCal/h, 12,000 Btu/h or 3.516 thermal kW.
Net Refrigerating Capacity :
A quantity defined as the mass flow rate of the evaporator water multiplied by the difference in enthalpy of water entering and leaving the cooler, expressed in kCal/h, tons of Refrigeration.
kW/ton rating :
Commonly referred to as efficiency, but actually power input to compressor motor divided by tons of cooling produced, or kilowatts per ton (kW/ton). Lower kW/ton indicates higher efficiency.
Coefficient of Performance (COP) :
Chiller efficiency measured in Btu output (cooling) divided by Btu input (electric power).
Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) :
Performance of smaller chillers and rooftop units is frequently measured in EER rather than kW/ton. EER is calculated by dividing a chiller's cooling capacity (in Btu/h) by its power input (in watts) at full-load conditions. The higher the EER, the more efficient the unit.

9.4 Preparatory for Measurements

After establishing that steady-state conditions, three sets of data shall be taken, at a minimum of five-minute intervals. To minimize the effects of transient conditions, test readings should be taken as nearly simultaneously.

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