Canadian Consulting Engineer

ASHRAE rescinds announcement related to cooling towers

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers has rescinded a press release it...

May 10, 2010   Canadian Consulting Engineer

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers has rescinded a press release it issued on April 7, 2010 related to its research on biological control in cooling towers using non-chemical water treatment devices.
The release had suggested that the non-chemical devices were not always effective. Canadian Consulting Engineer ran a news brief about the announcement in its latest issue, click here.
Following the receipt of numerous comments and questions about the release, ASHRAE decided to rescind it pending further review. ASHRAE’s technical committee, TC 3.6 Water Treatment, which sponsored and is responsible for the project , will decide whether to approve the report on which the press release was based within the next 30-60 days.
One problem, for example, is that the prior press release referenced Legionella although the project did not include protocols for testing for Legionella.
In its latest press release, dated May 5, ASHRAE also notes: “RP 1361, as is typical of experimental research projects, did not involve actual full-scale cooling towers operating in a working cooling system. Rather, researchers constructed a very small Plexiglas model of a cooling tower, fully complying with the proposal submitted by the researcher and approved by TC. 3.6. There are significant variances between the preliminary results of the study and actual field results recorded by non-chemical device manufacturers. This is one aspect of the study that will be reviewed by TC 3.6 and may indicate the need for further research.
“Regardless of the type of water treatment used, ASHRAE recommends that owners of cooling and refrigeration systems conduct routine testing to evaluate whether the water treatment is working effectively.”


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