AHR Expo announces 2016 Innovation Award Winners

International Exposition Company announces the winners of the 2016 Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition (AHR Expo) Innovation Awards.

The annual awards competition honors the most inventive and original products, systems and technologies showcased at each year’s AHR Expo in the categories of: building automation; cooling; green building; heating; indoor air quality; plumbing; refrigeration; software; tools & instruments; and ventilation.

Winners were selected by a panel of third-party ASHRAE member judges who evaluated all award entries based on innovative design, creativity, application, value and market impact.

Award winners will be recognized in a formal ceremony at the 2016 AHR Expo, which takes place next January 25 to 27 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.  A singular 2016 AHR Expo Product of the Year award winner, selected from among the 10 category winners, will also be announced at that time.

“Over the years, the visible trends and themes across award winners have shifted, however the innovative spirit has remained constant,” said Clay Stevens, president of International Exposition Company. “We have seen solutions for markets that were previously inconceivable, and have observed as the annual Innovation Award winners continue to set the pace fast, and the bar high, for evolution across the HVACR industry.  Each year’s competition is no less fascinating than the last in this respect, and we enthusiastically commend those who’ve earned this merit for 2016.”

Listed by category, the 2016 AHR Expo Innovation Award winners are:

Building Automation​

Company: Accutrol, LLC (www.accutrolllc.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 1154)

Innovation: Accutrol AVC Fume Hood Control System

The Accutrol AVC Fume Hood Control System with Insight Graphical User Interface (GUI) combines the low pressure drop AccuValve® AVC5000 Airflow Control Valve with a “smart” display and a powerful, simple and intuitive user interface to deliver groundbreaking airflow control technology.  Notably streamlining installation, start-up, operation and operational modification of Variable Air Volume (VAV) fume hoods, the AVC Fume Hood Control System integrates a smart electronics-driven ePI® airflow measurement and control system that provides pressure-independent performance without use of complex and exposed mechanical components. Vertical, horizontal or combination sash VAV fume hoods are easily configured with the intuitive Accutrol Insight, which also enables verification of sash calibration.

Cooling

Company: Parker Hannifin - Sporlan Division (www.sporlanonline.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 2442)

Innovation: ZoomLine™ Flexible Tubing

ZoomLine™ is a six-layer, highly flexible tubing solution ideal for refrigeration and air-conditioning (AC) applications, and approved for current and emerging refrigerant technologies supporting OEM and service customers.  ZoomLine’s flexibility facilitates more streamlined installation when compared to traditional copper tubing, eliminating the need for couplings, elbows or adaptors, or braze joints that can potentially leak. Accommodating pressures up to 700 psi, ZoomLine is impervious to environmental, temperature and pressure extremes, and provides long-term performance in the guidance of refrigerant across mechanical system equipment.  

Green Building

Company: International Wastewater Systems Inc. (www.iwhes.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 2997)

Innovation: Piranha Wastewater Heat Recovery Heat Pump

The Piranha is a self-contained heat pump that extracts thermal energy from wastewater for domestic hot water production in a wide scope of commercial applications.  Using a specially engineered direct expansion heat exchanger, the Piranha has been optimized for 50- to 200-unit residential buildings and stand-alone commercial applications.  The Piranha is easily installed in new and retrofit construction projects, is attributable to LEED credit criterion, and promotes the numerous environmental and energy-saving benefits of an expertly engineered wastewater heat recovery system.

Heating

Company: Victaulic (www.victaulic.com / www.victaulicsteam.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 4214)

Innovation: Victaulic Grooved System for Saturated Steam Piping

The Victaulic System Solution for Saturated Steam is the first grooved mechanical piping system for commercial and industrial saturated steam applications. The system joins 2-8-in. pipes and incorporates Victaulic’s Style 870 rigid coupling, a full line of fittings, and pipe preparation tool roll sets as a comprehensive solution for steam applications including heating, sterilization, cooking and drying. Traditionally required welding, flanging or threading to join distribution, process and condensate return piping, steam piping system installation is now notably streamlined with the Victaulic System Solution for Saturated Steam. Designed in accordance with the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, as well as ASME B31.1, ASME B31.3 and ASME B31.9, the system is the first viable alternative to these traditional joining methods.  With a spring-energized polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) composite seal capable of withstanding the temperature and pressure limits of ASME B31.3 Category D Fluid Service, the groundbreaking system performs at system temperatures up to 366°F (186°C), and pressures of up to 150 psi (1,034 kPa).

Indoor Air Quality​

Company: SEMCO LLC (www.semcohvac.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 4991)

Innovation: ASCENDANT™ conventional cooling, active desiccant hybrid system

The ASCENDANT™ Series is an active desiccant hybrid system that provides conventional cooling and dehumidification for commercial applications requiring 100-percent outdoor air, and low dew point temperatures/supply air humidity levels.  Ideal for applications including hospital operating rooms, archival and dry storage, hotels and multi-family buildings, ASCENDANT operates without the need for exhaust heat recovery, and can perform as a partial or dedicated outdoor air system (DOAS), or as a true variable air volume (VAV) unit. Compared to conventional mechanical DX or chiller systems, ASCENDANT provides up to three times more dehumidification, achieves dew point temperatures as low as 20°F and uses up to 60 percent less cooling capacity. ASCENDANT promotes efficient mechanical system operation via higher coil air discharge and central plant suction temperatures, which facilitates performance that surpasses ASHRAE 90.1 building energy, ASHRAE 170 ventilation and ASHRAE 62.1 indoor air quality (IAQ) standards.  Latent loads are, in majority, addressed by economical hot water, steam, waste heat or direct gas-fired regeneration energy, facilitating 50- to 75-percent greater efficiency when compared to conventional DX dehumidifiers with electric compressors.  Energy savings are further realized via integration of SEMCO's on-board, integrated direct digital control (DDC), which optimizes system operation and space condition management to achieve notably flexible air temperatures and relative humidity (RH).

Plumbing

Company: SEMCO LLC (www.semcohvac.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 4991)

Innovation: NEUTON controlled chilled beam pump module

NEUTON is the industry's first and only smart, plug-and-play proactive condensation control device for active chilled beams.  Factory-built and pre-tested, the controlled chilled beam pump module package incorporates an independently powered integrated direct digital controller, chilled and hot water connections, valves, variable-speed electronically commutated (EC) motor pumps, smart sensors and other unique features.  With cost, condensation, and controls concerns traditionally limiting the application of otherwise highly efficient active chilled beam technology, NEUTON can be installed at a cost similar to conventional systems, and eliminates need for ancillary chiller, boiler and secondary water distribution systems associated with conventional chilled beam HVAC designs.  NEUTON blends and re-circulates return water within its zone to convert typical 42°F and 140°F primary loop water temperatures to optimal 58°F or 100°F chilled beam discharge temperatures. This prevents cooling mode condensation and heating season heat stratification. A single NEUTON unit is capable of controlling up to 10 chilled beams, depending on flow rate requirements.

Refrigeration

Company: CAREL INDUSTRIES S.p.A. (www.carel.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 2257)

Innovation: HEOS Sistema

The HEOS water loop system is specifically engineered for cooling self-contained commercial food refrigeration equipment in grocery store applications.  Designed to notably reduce total refrigerant charge by up to 80 percent, the system features small, self-contained refrigeration circuits with hermetically sealed piping that also minimize the chance for refrigerant leaks. HEOS includes DC compressors specifically designed to maximize energy efficiency at partial loads, while providing a wide range of speed modulation that facilitates better temperature control with less fluctuation.  An electronic expansion valve further elevates energy savings by efficiently modulating refrigerant flow in the evaporator coils.  A control board dynamically manages the system’s various components (i.e. compressor, expansion valve, fans) via implementation of advanced algorithms, with diagnostics that streamline both system startup and maintenance.  Achieving 25 percent greater energy savings when compared to standard DX refrigeration systems, and 20 percent greater savings than ON-OFF water loop systems, HEOS systems are also easily installed as independent plug-in units.

Software

Company: Plasma Air International (www.plasma-air.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 4410)

Innovation: PlasmaSoft 2.0 IAQ Procedure Software

PlasmaSoft 2.0 is a web-based software package that calculates and compares indoor air contaminant levels using both ASHRAE's Ventilation Rate Method (VRM) and the Indoor Air Quality Procedure (IAQP), which facilitates reduction of outside air intake. As a result, commercial, institutional and industrial building owners can reduce first cost by downsizing AC equipment, and lower energy use by reducing outside air intake.  PlasmaSoft 2.0 is an enhanced version of the first and only web-based IAQ Procedure program, PlasmaSoft 1.0, and performs complex calculations critical to achieving decreased CapEx and OpEx. The program contains all ASHRAE Standard 62.1 mass-balance equations, default values for occupancy density, and outdoor air rates per person and per square foot for all space types – proving compliance without unnecessarily conditioning excessive amounts of outside air.  Simplified and convenient, PlasmaSoft 2.0 provides consulting engineers and other key stakeholders with a reliable program that stores project and individual zone data in the cloud, making it easily accessible at any time.

Tools & Instruments

Company: Parker Hannifin - Sporlan Division (www.sporlanonline.com/zoomlock; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 2442)

Innovation: ZoomLock™ Braze-Free Fittings

ZoomLock™ braze-free pipe connectors quickly, easily and reliably join copper tubing in a variety of HVACR applications, with connections that are made via exclusive crimping technology and without need for brazing or its associated equipment, permitting and technical training.  ZoomLock braze-free fittings are engineered for high-pressure copper refrigeration connections, and offer the first crimp technology approved for applications up to 700 psi.  Requiring no nitrogen purging, fire spotters or hot work permits, and facilitating more flexible access to jobsites, ZoomLock’s game changing technology translates to significant time savings for the mechanical contractor.

Ventilation

Company: Aeroseal LLC (www.aeroseal.com; 2016 AHR Expo booth No. 5859)

Innovation: Aeroseal duct sealing technology

Aeroseal provides the industry’s first alternative to traditional manual duct sealing, with an aerosol-based duct sealing solution that works from the inside of the ventilation shaft to “seek” and bond-seal targeted leaks. Developed at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy, EPA and others, this duct sealing technology enables access to leaks in exhaust shafts of existing buildings without any deconstruction/demolition.  A groundbreaking solution, Aeroseal duct sealing technology is ideal in a wide scope of applications, including multi-family, hospitality, healthcare and other buildings.

Additionally, the following 33 companies have been recognized with honorable mentions in each of the 10 award entry categories:

Building automation

•       Continental Control Systems, LLC (WattNode Meter Module)

•       Danfoss (Danfoss NovoCon® S Digital Actuator)

•       Honeywell International Inc. (RedLINK Equipment Remote Module (ERM))

•       KMC Controls, Inc. (KMC Commander Controller and Cloud Service)

Cooling

•       Baltimore Aircoil Company (Series 3000 Cooling Tower with the ENDURADRIVE™ Fan System)

•       Danfoss Refrigeration & Air-Conditioning (Danfoss DSH Scroll Compressors with Intermediate Discharge Valves)

•       Emerson Climate Technologies (Copeland Scroll™ UltraTech™ compressor)

Green Building

•       Baltimore Aircoil Company (PFi Closed Circuit Cooling Tower)

•       Metraflex Co. (LPD Y-Strainer)

•       Nortec (DL Series Humidifier – Hybrid Adiabatic System)

Heating

•       Danfoss (Danfoss AB-QM™ Pressure Independent Control Valve (PICV) 3rd Generation)

•       GeoStar (Sycamore variable capacity geothermal heat pump)

•       Lochinvar, LLC (CREST® Condensing Boiler)

•       Mitsubishi Electric US, Inc. Cooling & Heating (Hyper-Heating INVERTER™ (H2i®) MSZ-FH06 Single-zone Heat Pump System)

Indoor Air Quality

•       Distech Controls, Inc. (Allure™ EC-Smart-Comfort Room Sensor)

•       Nortec (GS Series Gas-Fired Humidifier)

•       Purealizer Industries, LLC (Purealizer, Airborne Disinfection Fixture)

Plumbing

•       Des Champs Technologies (N-Series Waterless Trap)

•       LG Electronics USA, Inc. (LG Hydro Kit (High Temp) - ARNH763K3B2 waste heat recovery system)

•       Rheem Manufacturing Company (The Rheem Prestige Series™ Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater)

Refrigeration

•       Baltimore Aircoil Company (Transcritical CO2 TrilliumSeries™ Condenser)

•       Embraco North America, Inc. (EM3 Series Compressors)

•       Honeywell International Inc. (Solstice® N40 refrigerant)

Software

•       DCNE – Cool Calc Manual J

•       KMC Controls, Inc. (KMC Connect Lite Software)

•       Parker Hannifin - Sporlan Division (Sporlan Refrigeration Troubleshooting App)

Tools & Instruments

•       Automatic Airflow Balancing LLC (ABM-200 Wireless Anemometer)

•       Axiom Industries Ltd. (Puropal H2O demineralizer)

•       Bacharach, Inc. (Bacharach Reporting App for Combustion Analyzers)

•       Eaton (B-Line Series 4Dimension™ Strut System)

Ventilation

•       Danfoss Drives (Danfoss VLT® DriveMotor FCM 106/FCP 106)

•       Munters Corporation (DryCool™ ERV DOAS System)

•       PRIHODA Fabric Duct (SquAireTex Fabric Diffuser Tiles)

For more information on the 2016 AHR Expo, visit www.ahrexpo.com.

 

 

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