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Daikin has recently been involved in the commissioning of a new chiller unit at CERN.

The project required the installation of the unit at the BA7 building, a facility housing equipment related to the functioning of one of the accelerators at the European Organization for Nuclear Research.




1x EWAT-B- R-32 air-cooled scroll chiller with Free Cooling

Total cooling capacity: 432 kW


About the project


The Building BA7 houses power converters, electrical switchboards, and cooling equipment, used for the Super Proton Synchrotron (SPS) accelerator and the experiments being performed with it.

The Super Proton Synchrotron is a particle accelerator of the synchrotron type which  accelerates protons and heavy ions to provide beams for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and for experiments such as NA62 and COMPASS.

Of course, all the equipment in the Building BA7 needs to be cooled down as it generates a lot of heat that needs to be dissipated, otherwise malfunctioning of the accelerator might occur, or experiments might be affected.

For this purpose, in the context of its consolidation program, CERN decided to replace an old chiller with a new Daikin air-cooled chiller.

The main needs for this consolidation project were:

  • compliance with regulations,
  • need for an energy efficient solution,
  • and absolute reliability given the importance of the activities carries out at CERN’s laboratories.


About the solution provided by Daikin


Daikin managed to meet CERN’s requirements for the project, supplying a R-32 chiller unit with the free cooling option.

This solution was the best option, as combines both high efficiency levels and low environmental impact, thanks to R-32 refrigerant. In fact, R-32 perfectly balances low GWP, low refrigerant charge (compared to R-410A) and energy efficiency levels, helping significantly reduce carbon emissions.



Also, the EWAT-B- chiller installed was equipped with the full DX Free Cooling option, which will use low external air temperatures to assist in chilling the water used for the air conditioning system. So, whenever outdoor temperatures will be favourable, the chiller will be able to turn off compressors and take advantage of the low outdoor temperature to chill water. That will make the HVAC system even more efficient and more environmentally sustainable.

The R-32 based Free Cooling, stands out not only for improving the overall efficiency of the HVAC system when outdoor conditions are favourable, but also for natural migration, which is essentially a characteristic R-32 refrigerant is well-known for, and that allows the refrigerant to naturally migrate (not mechanically with the use of pumps) to the condenser when certain conditions are met.

This feature allows to avoid components like additional refrigerant pumps, and that results not only in easier installation, but also in a more compact unit footprint. And most importantly, that results in having less parts subject to maintenance, which of course, implies lower operative costs.

And lastly, the R-32 based Free Cooling is typically more efficient compared to standard free cooling systems, as they typically require glycol water content of 30% or a free cooling separation plate heat exchanger, with a reduction of the overall system efficiency.


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