In December 2019, NIDON Clean Energy completed a breakthrough solar thermal air conditioning installation involving a 30-Ton Carrier chiller and four 8-foot SunTrac panels. This unit, located in the Honolulu Harbor in Hawaii, became the first active chiller in the world that runs with the SunTrac Solar Thermal SmartPanel™ and now reflects record-breaking amperage readings as a result.
This chiller is rated to typically draw about 63 amps but with supplementary power from the SunTrac panels, the load across three days in 28°C experienced a 75% decrease with a near steady state amp draw of 16 amps:
Timestamps reflected on the above data captures follow local Philippine time (PHT) and is to be adjusted back 18 hours to depict actual amp draw with respect to time of day in Honolulu, Hawaii (HST). Follow this link for live meter readings: eGauge Data for 30 Ton Carrier Chiller (To view amp data specific to activity from the SunTrac panels, scroll down to the control box and uncheck all boxes except for CT3, CT1, and CT2 Amperage.)
Along with the massive drop in amp draw, there is a corresponding decrease in the work being conducted by the unit’s digital scroll compressor leading to a significant reduction in the machine’s wear and tear on top of substantial electrical cost savings from solar thermal air conditioning.
Data is being tracked and recorded by an eGauge metering device in a three-phase configuration and placed inside an outdoor-rated enclosure:
Update: Efficiency data across two weeks
Below is a screen capture of meter readings for the first two weeks of recording with the eGauge. The compressor amp draw still averages at 15-16 amps, with significant dips between midnight and dawn due to the cooler ambient temperature.
Update: One month’s worth of meter readings
A month of meter readings shows amp draw still at an average of 15-16 amps.
EDIT: During a recent swap back testing, it was discovered that the setup of the eGauge recorded lower than the actual amp readings. This was determined while working with Carrier as to how digital scroll compressors work.
This chiller is rated to typically draw about 63 amps but with supplementary power from the SunTrac panels, the load across three days in 28°C experienced a 57% decrease with an average of 27 amps, plus or minus of 2.5 amps.
Update: Improved performance from eGauge reconfiguration
Prior to being replaced, the old air conditioning unit ran near the 90 amp maximum over current limit, which caused the main circuit breaker to trip. For the past 12 months, the 30-ton unit has been running at an average of 23.9 amps.
As a perspective, the unit’s main power supply is rated at 70 MCA (minimum current amps) and 90 MOCP (maximum over current protection).
After three years, the 30-ton unit continues to run efficiently as shown by the condenser’s good condition, wherein the green protectant is not worn off due to usage and heat wear. Carrier Hawaii has not received any troubleshooting requests for this unit and its life expectancy is expected to be extended as a result of the high efficiency.