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Variable Refrigerant Flow

GPG-006, December 2012


Variable Refrigerant Flow is an HVAC technology that can simultaneously heat and cool different spaces in a facility and allow for greater temperature control while conserving energy. This technology has the potential to achieve 34 percent energy savings compared to older systems. Click on the infographic below to enlarge.

GPG Findings 006, December 2012, Variable Refrigerant Flow. Opportunity: How much energy is used for heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) in U.S. office buildings? 34% of energy goes to HVAC. 3% of U.S. office buildings rely on VRF. Primary HVAC system in Europe, Japan and China. Technology: How does VRF work? Provides independent temperature control to rooms throughout building. Uses refrigerant as cooling and heating medium; substituting thin pipes for ductwork. Measurement and Verification: Where did M and V occur? Pacific Northwest National Laboratory drew from a wide variety of sources to evaluate the performance of VRF for GSA buildings. Results: How did VRF perform in M and V? 34% energy savings projected relative to code-compliant HVAC. Thin profile advantageous in historic buildings with limited room for ductwork. Cost-effective when the premium is less than $4 square foot compared to code-compliant HVAC.  Deployment: Where does M and V recommend deploying VRF? Pilot projects. Research on field performance is limited.

Reference above to any specific commercial product, process or service does not constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation or favoring by the United States Government or any agency thereof.


GPG Technologies findings VRF