The Ministry of Economy, Trade & Industry of Japan (METI) and Daikin jointly conducted a seminar on High Energy Efficient Air Conditioners using inverter technology and the next generation refrigerant HFC32 (R32), on December 17 at Hotel Taj Mansingh, New Delhi. It was part of the ongoing feasibility study – Dissemination of High Energy Residential Air Conditioners in India – commissioned by METI to Daikin. The seminar was conducted with a view to enhance the understanding of inverter and R32 technologies and products amongst key government and industry influencers. More than 70 participants from various government bodies and industry forums attended.
The seminar began with an address by Takeshi Nagasawa – Director, METI, giving the background of the power shortage in Japan in the wake of the tsunami, which has made energy efficiency an urgent issue. Shinya Okada, Senior Executive Officer, Daikin Industries spoke about the importance of measures for containing global warming in his opening remarks.
The keynote address, delivered by Dr. Hirokazu Taniguchi, MD, Energy Conservation Centre, Japan (ECCJ), touched upon the successful outcome of the decision to increase the set temperature in air conditioned spaces to 28°C.
Satoru Fujimoto, GM, Daikin Industries spoke on Inverter Technology. Tadafumi Mikoshi, Senior Manager, Daikin Industries made a presentation on R32 Properties and Production Line Conversion, in which he emphasized that while there is no one-size-fits-all solution, R32 is the most balanced alternative refrigerant for room air conditioners. He mentioned that the world’s first AC using R32 was manufactured on November 1, 2011 by Daikin in Japan, and over a million such ACs have been sold till now. By September 2014, all 53 models manufactured by Daikin will be fully replaced with R32 units. Mitsubishi, Hitachi and Panasonic have followed suit. Local companies can get finance from the UN Multilateral Fund to convert their production lines from R22 to non-ODS and low GWP refrigerants.
Saturo Kono, Deputy GM, Daikin Industries followed with a brief presentation on Risk Assessment and Supply of R32, during which he mentioned that the production of R32 in India will commence in 2015.
The afternoon session began with a presentation by Miki Yamanaka, Manager, Daikin Industries on Energy Efficient Air Conditioners using R32 and Inverter Technology. She disclosed that towards capacity building for R32 in India, Daikin has held 76 training sessions covering 3600 local installers.
Saurabh Diddi, Energy Economist at Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) talked about the need to increase the affordability and reduce the payback period for ACs, and to reduce the content of rare earth magnets that are sourced exclusively from China.
R.K. Mehta, Secretary, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Manufacturers’ Association (RAMA), in his concluding remarks, made a reference to the increasing Indo-Japanese collaboration due to geo-political reasons, and announced that RAMA has started an energy efficiency platform. He mentioned that some multinationals are not pricing their new refrigerants in line with the Kyoto Protocol.
K.J. Jawa, MD, Daikin India, proposed the vote of thanks. He announced that R32 will be available in India at half the price of R410A.