Ramaswamy, S., Schorsch, C., and Kolar, M., "Polymer Air-Conditioning Conveyance Lines for Automotive HVAC," SAE Technical Paper 2017-26-0180, 2017, doi:10.4271/2017-26-0180.
Automotive OEMs are adapting various “green” technologies to meet the upcoming and anticipated regulations for reducing direct and indirect GHG emissions equivalent to CO2. Using compact devices and lightweight components on the aggregates, OEMs get the benefit of carbon credits towards their contribution in reducing CO2 emissions. With regards to the HVAC systems, enhancements such as ultra-low permeation hose assemblies and adoption of low GWP refrigerant have shown promising results in reducing the direct GHG emissions by controlling refrigerant permeation & indirect GHG emissions by using compact and high efficiency compressors, compact heat exchangers, and other technologies that contribute to weight reduction and ultimately impact CO2 emissions.Traditional AC lines are routed/installed in space that accommodates the relative movement between the engine and chassis by connecting the various parts. Direct emissions from HVAC operating with R134a contribute nearly 25% of the equivalent CO2 emissions per vehicle. By reducing the weight of AC lines by 20-30% through the use of polymers, these emissions can be reduced by as much as 50%. Material selection is the key for the sustained performance of the AC lines over a period of time. Eaton has worked with its technology partners to identify polymer materials & with in-house expertise worked on the evaluation of different manufacturing methods to finalize the appropriate one suitable for industrialization. Successful field trials has justified the selection of material & manufacturing process.