Finalists in the HVAC/R category for the 2012 Product of the Year competition


Rooftop unit

RN SeriesAAON RN Series packaged rooftop units (55 to 140 tons) are engineered for efficiency and energy savings at both full and partial load. Rigid polyurethane foam panels provide increased thermal resistance, reduced air leakage, and resistance to microbial growth. Direct-drive backward-curved plenum fans do not have belt energy losses and are more efficient than forward-curved fans. Variable speed scroll compressors offer precise load-matching capability by automatically adjusting capacity to match the load cooling requirements, providing significant energy savings at part load conditions. The rooftop unit can be customized and factory-tested to meet nearly any building requirements without significant factory or field modifications.

Geothermal heat pump

Tranquility 22 Digital SeriesClimateMaster designed the Tranquility 22 Digital Series geothermal heat pumps with features including a two-stage compressor, Energy Star Tier 3 efficiency, integrated variable-speed water flow, variable-speed fan with soft start and constant afm control, digital communicating controls, and true plug-and-play functionality. The integrated electronic communicating interface to thermostat, fan motor, and geo source pump allows for configuration, monitoring fault display, and diagnostics at the thermostat. The cabinet’s small physical footprint makes it suitable for installation in tight spaces and in replacement/retrofit applications. Tranquility 22 Digital systems are available in vertical and horizontal configurations in six capacities.

Portable fan

Yellow JacketYellow Jacket is a 105-lb portable fan designed by Big Ass Fans for flexibility, quiet operation, and long-term durability. The heavy-gauge steel carriage is engineered to withstand harsh environments, including run-ins with forklifts. The housing is made from high-density polyethylene with vibration dampening properties. The 3-D progress pitch blades are made from high-performance polyamide nylon to maximize efficiency and airflow coverage. Oversized wheels and an ergonomic handle provide maneuverability, or the fan can be mounted on ceilings, walls, and floors. Airflow amount and direction are controlled with a locking position mechanism that allows for 10 variable speeds.

Motor shaft voltage test kit

AEGIS shaft voltage test kitThe AEGIS shaft voltage test kit measures and documents the voltages of motors controlled by variable frequency drives (VFDs). The kit can test every VFD-controlled motor at a facility to determine whether it is subject to stray shaft voltages great enough to damage bearings. The kit includes a replaceable probe tip with high-density conductive microfibers that ensure continuous contact with a rotating motor shaft. Electro Static Technology manufactures the tip and extension rod with optional magnetic base, while Fluke makes the 10:1 probe and the Fluke 190 Series II ScopeMeter portable oscilloscope that displays and saves the voltage waveform.

Heat exchanger

BPX BPDW brazed plate heat exchangerBell + Gossett’s BPX BPDW brazed plate heat exchanger can be used as a refrigerant condenser, an evaporator, an oil cooler, and in other applications. This heat exchanger is designed to provide leak protection, safety, thermal efficiency, and durability in a compact, low-cost unit. Design features include true double-wall construction including port regions, double-wall plate design with unique air vent leak paths, complete peripheral braze for additional strength, four dedicated leak ports for quick and easy leak detection, and dependable protection of fresh water streams for cooling of oils and refrigerants.

Steam boiler with control system


Tribute vertical tubeless steam boilerFulton’s compact, low-footprint, gas-fired Tribute vertical tubeless steam boiler for commercial and industrial applications can operate at sub-9 ppm NOx and includes an advanced boiler control system. It uses a fiber mesh burner, variable-speed fan, and integrated gas train, providing low emissions combustion with only 4 in. incoming gas pressure. Features include full 4 to 1 modulation and a stainless steel jacket. The Fulton SC-750 touchscreen control system shows current boiler status with high-tech display parameters for burner firing rate, stack temperature, steam pressure, boiler water temperature, and stack emissions levels. The module also displays the status of the boiler feed water pumps, de-aerator water temperature, and boiler water level.

HVAC system

SunSource HVAC systemThe SunSource HVAC system developed by Lennox can effectively double the rooftop unit’s efficiency rating, integrating a rooftop unit, solar modules, and microinverters to power commercial buildings. The system feeds solar energy directly into a 3- or 6-ton Energence rooftop unit, and supplies any excess electricity to the rest of the building or to the power grid. Real-time energy production is recorded and monitored by a communications module. Installation does not require a high-dc-voltage line, and each microinverter’s output is limited to 50 V. During a power outage, the microinverters stop transmitting to the rooftop unit and the main building panel.

Wet rotor circulator

MAGNA 32-100The MAGNA 32-100 variable-speed wet rotor circulator from Grundfos has a permanent magnet motor, reducing power consumption. The motor design delivers a starting torque four times higher than the standard induction motor while avoiding slippage and allowing flows from 0 to 52 gpm and a noise level less than 35 db. The AUTOADAPT feature controls this pump performance within a defined performance range, ensuring the lowest possible energy consumption without sacrificing comfort. Current conditions can be analyzed and adjusted with an integrated frequency converter. A 10-ft cord connects the circulator to a wall outlet with no need to open a terminal box.

Screw chiller


YORK YVAAThe YORK YVAA air-cooled variable-speed screw chiller was manufactured by Johnson Controls for efficiency, reduced sound, and sustainability. The chiller offers flexible energy consumption with efficiencies up to 11.6 EER and an option to configure an integrated part load value up to 19.8 EER. This chiller features low kW/ton at both full-load design and off-design conditions. SilentNight and sound attenuation options work with the programmable control to optimize for sound performance by load-limiting the chiller. This device uses a refrigerant with no ozone-depletion potential and no phase-out date, a falling-film evaporator, and a microchannel condenser coil to reduce refrigerant charge.

Compressor with communications

Copeland ScrollEmerson Climate Technologies, a business of Emerson, manufactured this Copeland Scroll compressor with CoreSense communications modules to give air conditioning customers communication, protection, and diagnostics onboard. The compressors can stream real-time diagnostics to the system controller. By using the compressor as a sensor, data from inside the system can be accessed and monitored in real time by the controller, improving performance and reliability. The system allows for automatic and proactive shutdown when adverse operating conditions are detected. Diagnostics and protection include missing phase, reverse phase, short cycling protection, motor temperature protection, locked rotor, and fault history over the life of the compressor.

Water source heat pump

SmartSourceThe Daikin McQuay SmartSource water source heat pump product line from McQuay International includes a variable-speed inverter pump with high efficiency and low sound levels in a system that continuously adjusts compressor speeds. This water source heat pump comes in a range of sizes and a breadth of options that include smart dehumidification, waterside economizers, and internal electric heat. The SmartSource platform is geothermal ready, including an option for factory-mounted loop water pumps.

Rooftop unit

RebelThe Daikin McQuay Rebel commercial rooftop unit from McQuay International features part-load efficiencies that can be greater than 19.5 IEER, which is 60% to 70% better than the ASHRAE 90.1 minimum standard. This Rebel system functions as a variable air volume heat pump unit and is available in 3- to 15-ton sizes. Its variable heat pump has a hybrid gas and electric option as well as a modulating hot gas reheat option that contributes to efficient operation in colder weather climates. The system features Daikin’s variable inverter scroll compressor and variable ECM fan motors that reduce noise.

Hydronic heat exchanger

PWFYWith Mitsubishi Electric Cooling and Heating’s variable refrigerant flow PWFY hydronic heat exchanger, a closed-circuit water heater available in two sizes and configurations, daily cost of hot water generation is four times less than with a gas heater and 10 times less than with an electric heater. Using waste heat from the cooling cycle, this exchanger can heat water to 115 F and cool water to 50 F in the HEX configuration. In the booster unit configuration, it works with a compressor to heat water to 160 F. Three operation modes provide a full temperature range based on outdoor ambient temperature, and circulation to prevent pipe freeze.

Rooftop ventilation system

AtherionModine Manufacturing’s Atherion is a 15- to 30-ton packaged rooftop ventilation system designed to meet ASHRAE 189.1 and 62.1 standards for efficiency and indoor air quality. This stainless steel primary heat exchanger offers a maximum of 8,700 cfm outdoor air, low static pressure, a built-in air bypass, optional preheat for frost control, and a gas heating option using Modine’s Conservicore Technology. This unit is factory designed, programmed, and installed with the Modine control system, supplying interoperability with network communications. An optional energy recovery module uses the waste energy from the building to temper the incoming load while delivering 100% outside air.

Brushless permanent magnet motors

Generation 2.0 PremiumPlus+NovaTorque’s Generation 2.0 PremiumPlus+ 3- and 5-hp brushless permanent magnet motors are designed with a conical, flux-focusing stator and rotor hub geometry, enabling low-cost ferrite magnets to deliver rare-earth-like motor performance. These motors have motor-only rated point efficiencies of 93% and 92% for 3- and 5-hp versions, respectively. Variable frequency drives drive these motors, which are packaged in standard NEMA frame sizes and mounting dimensions for easy substitution. Due to high power density, these motors are available both in the mounting frame size typical for induction motors, as well as one frame size smaller.

Air conditioner

CMW30MovinCool’s CMW30 water-cooled, ceiling-mount air conditioner is designed for applications with dense heat loads, where an air-cooled model cannot be used due to the lack of available space for hot exhaust air. This unit’s cooling capacity is rated at 29,400 Btu/h total and 22,000 Btu/h sensible for computer rooms. It is 20-in. high; fits above a drop ceiling; includes a built-in mounting bracket, flanges, and vibration isolators; and can be installed using standard hardware. No external condensing unit, refrigerant connections, or charging are necessary. The unit has an IEER of 17.0, made possible by a variable-speed inverter compressor and inverter fan motors.

Wireless sensor system

Lifetime PowerPowercast Corp.’s Lifetime Power wireless sensor system for HVAC control and building automation powers wireless sensor nodes without batteries or wires, but instead with remote transmitters that broadcast radio frequency energy. This system has three parts: battery-less sensor nodes embedded with Powerharvester receivers so they may be powered wirelessly, the WSG-101 BAS gateway, and the TX91501 Powercaster transmitter. One gateway can scale up to 800 sensor points and 100 sensor nodes including the WSN-1001 temperature and humidity sensor; the WSN-1101 temperature, humidity, and light sensor; and the WSN-1102 CO2 sensor. The gateway interfaces to wired BAS networks via industry-standard protocols.

Programmable HVAC/R controller

Modicon M168The Modicon M168 programmable logic controller was designed by Schneider Electric to help OEMs and end users improve performance, optimize costs, and speed time-to-market for HVAC/R machines. Using flexible architectures, customized design, and SoHVAC software, which allows single programming and commissioning, this controller offers solutions for small/medium chillers, rooftop units, refrigeration racks, and air handling units. The Web-enabled capabilities of this controller allow machine OEMs and end users to remotely monitor energy consumption, machine shutdowns, and other problems. The controller can be integrated into building management system platforms through communications protocols to control all building functions.

Variable-speed drives

Altivar 212Schneider Electric designed the new Altivar 212 variable-speed drive and the S-Flex enclosed version to provide OEMs and control panel builders with energy-efficient and economical solutions for pump and fan applications. These ac drives adjust motor speed to the required flow of air or fluids, reducing energy costs by 50%. Electronic motor controls decrease the mechanical stress on belts, piping, and ductwork with no need for valve or inlet guide vane maintenance. Embedded reduced harmonic technology reduces the wire size and the size of upstream overcurrent protection devices and operates 10% more efficiently than typical ac drives.

Chiller plant

EarthWiseThe EarthWise ice-enhanced, air-cooled chiller plant from Trane allows building owners, mechanical system designers, and operators to take advantage of less expensive off-peak energy by making ice, which is stored and used for cooling during expensive peak periods. This EarthWise solution provides a predesigned package that streamlines the process of creating and deploying a cooling system that is designed to reduce operating costs and to support the Smart Grid. Standard system configurations include customizable control logic, dashboards, wiring diagrams, and supporting drawings. A packaged skid with pumps, valves, sensors, and ancillary items also is available.

In-floor chilled beams

In-floor active chilled beamsTate’s in-floor active chilled beams bring water under the floor to cool air directly at the perimeter of a building, avoiding many concerns of overhead chilled beams including spider ducting, damage from leaking water lines, and latent loads producing condensation. The beam catches cold air as it falls, heats it, and supplies the heated air to the space, saving energy and providing maximum heating performance. The three product options consist of a two-pipe model with supply and return water connections, a four-pipe model featuring two supply and two return water connections, and a two-pipe model using electric heat at the perimeter.

Water source heat pump

Versatec BaseThe Versatec Base from WaterFurnace combines high-efficiency and value-added features in a compact water source heat pump for water loop and geothermal applications. These units feature a reciprocating single-capacity compressor paired with a PSC blower motor. This heat pump includes an optional two-position water valve, an automatic control valve, and an optional factory-installed, low-pressure drop water solenoid valve for variable-speed pumping applications. The cabinet is made of heavy gauge galvanized steel for corrosion resistance. Standard foil-faced insulation can be upgraded to FormiShield Plus coil coating, which protects against formicary corrosion, or to ThermaShield, which protects against condensation.

Solar-powered diffuser

EOSTitus HVAC’s EOS is a solar-powered diffuser featuring wireless energy harvesting. This diffuser addresses the imperfect split compromises commonly found in a building’s perimeter system, where half the air discharge is supplied in the heating and half in the cooling configuration. EOS delivers both heating and cooling by using an auto-changeover function powered entirely by solar energy, eliminating the wasteful compromise by automatically changing the air discharge pattern to the correct horizontal or vertical position for heating and cooling applications. With the energy-harvesting feature, this diffuser allows energy savings of about 30% over traditional linear diffusers in the split system.

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