Incoming ISO refrigeration standards for Australia & NZ

STANDARDS Australia has proposed the adoption of five ISO (International Standards Organisation) standards for refrigerants and refrigeration systems and is seeking comment from industry until September 1 at http://tinyurl.com/meoyjbt.

Under the proposals, AS/NZS 1677.1 Refrigerating systems, Part 1: Refrigerant classification and AS/NZS 1677.2 Refrigerating systems, Part 2: Safety requirements for fixed applications will be superseded by ISO 817 and ISO 5149 respectively.

The new standards will be titled AS/NZS ISO 817:2015, Refrigerants – Designation and safety classification and AS/NZS 5149, Refrigerating systems and heat pumps – Safety and environmental requirements, Parts 1 to 4.

Standards Australia says the changes include “a revised, internationally-aligned system of refrigerant designation and safety classification, as well as an extended scope to not only include safety requirements, but also the environmental aspects of system construction, leak prevention, vibration, maintenance, log books, repair and recovery of refrigerant”.

At this stage both new documents are direct text adoptions of their ISO counterparts, which were published last year.

AS/NZS ISO 817:2015 includes a refrigerant designation system and safety classifications, including the new A2L class (non-toxic, mildly flammable) for gases such as R1234yf while R32 has been reclassified from A2 to A2L.

Compared with AS/NZS 1677.1AS/NZS 5149 lists more than 100 refrigerants and their safety properties compared with 66 in the current document.

The proposed replacement for AS/NZS 1677.2 is divided into four parts: Definitions, classifications and selection criteria; Design, construction, testing, marking and documentation Installation site; Operation, maintenance, repair and recovery.

It is a significant expansion in scope compared with the current document that only covers safety and sometimes contradicted the Refrigerant Handling Codes of Practice. AS/NZS 5149 also covers the use of CO2 cascades and transcritical systems in supermarkets.

Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Airconditioning and Heating (AIRAH) chief executive Phil Wilkinson said the proposed changes herald “a big change for industry”.

“AIRAH originally proposed this work to update the Australian Standards and we are very pleased that the technical committee has been able to play an influential role in shaping the International Standards and adopting them for Australia and New Zealand.”

Standards Australia CEO Bronwyn Evans called on people who use, service and design equipment built to Australian refrigeration standards to provide feedback on the proposed changes.

“Throughout this process, we have been very conscious of the need to ensure that the public comment process is accessible to all,” she said.

“We have worked with ISO to make the International Standards available through public comment. We look forward to hearing your views between now and September.”

The public comment period closes on September 1 2015, with draft standards and a comment facility available at: http://tinyurl.com/meoyjbt

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