1997-02-24

An Investigation of the Feasibility of Refrigerant Charge Loss Detection Using Low Cost Measurements 970106

The feasibility of automatically detecting refrigerant charge loss in mobile air conditioning (MAC) systems by analyzing inexpensive dynamic measurements was studied. An indicator of the refrigerant inventory of the evaporator was developed. This measure, termed Time to Temperature Turning (TTT), is based on dynamic measurement of the evaporator outlet refrigerant temperature, and correlates strongly with charge level. TTT correlated well with clutch cycling behavior, a metric which is employed in current shop diagnostic practice to indicate refrigerant charge loss.Laboratory data were generated from a factorial experiment design on the following factors: condenser air inlet temperature, condenser air flow rate, evaporator air inlet temperature, compressor speed, and refrigerant charge. Experiments to date were conducted with a dry evaporator.

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