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Old 11-04-2015, 10:45 PM   #1
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Helium Refrigerator?

Anyone know anything about these. I'm considering an Atwood one for my Avion.

If it leaked refrigerant - I'd talk like a chipmunk. With an ammonia based one if you don't get out fast you just stop breathing period.

Thanks in advance for any info.

Paula
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Old 11-04-2015, 11:11 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
Anyone know anything about these. I'm considering an Atwood one for my Avion.

If it leaked refrigerant - I'd talk like a chipmunk. With an ammonia based one if you don't get out fast you just stop breathing period.

Thanks in advance for any info.

Paula
Grand Design started using these when they first came out last year. They had so much trouble that for 2016 they switched to Norcold. Much less trouble than the Atwood. They also quit using the Atwood AC and switched to Dometic. I personally like Dometic the best, in both refrigerators and air conditioners or heat pumps, which is my favorite in a Penguin model. My new 16 Classic came with a 15K up front and a 13.5K in the bedroom, which I had upgraded for another 15K.
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Old 11-04-2015, 11:32 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
Anyone know anything about these. I'm considering an Atwood one for my Avion.

If it leaked refrigerant - I'd talk like a chipmunk. With an ammonia based one if you don't get out fast you just stop breathing period.

Thanks in advance for any info.

Paula
There was a thread about these not too long ago.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f425...03-136121.html

The main thing you need to know is that the term "helium refrigerator" is misleading. The refrigerant is still ammonia.

In an absorption refrigerator the refrigerant loop is filled with ammonia and a ballast gas which maintains the pressure in the system at the proper level. Historically the ballast gas has been hydrogen; in the helium systems it's helium.
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Old 11-04-2015, 11:39 PM   #4
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One problem with helium is that it is the second smallest molecule so will leak out of a smaller hole that might not be a problem with other gases. I worked with helium refrigeration for vacuum cryopumps years ago and there are solutions but it takes good engineering and careful assembly. the helium cryopumps would go as low as about 10 degrees kelvin, about -440 Fahrenheit!
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Old 11-05-2015, 06:42 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Nuvite-F View Post
There was a thread about these not too long ago.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f425...03-136121.html

The main thing you need to know is that the term "helium refrigerator" is misleading. The refrigerant is still ammonia.

In an absorption refrigerator the refrigerant loop is filled with ammonia and a ballast gas which maintains the pressure in the system at the proper level. Historically the ballast gas has been hydrogen; in the helium systems it's helium.
Helium doesn't explode or burn like hydrogen. It takes one more cause of a major fire out of the equation. Remember the Hindenburg.
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Old 11-05-2015, 07:47 AM   #6
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In most RV fridge fires, it is not the hydrogen that is responsible for the fire, but highly pressurized, super heated ammonia that becomes a flammable plasma.

I was directly involved in a Norcold fire that totaled a diesel pusher and that was the findings of the professional fire investigators that were representing Norcold.

In addition, this inquiry clearly showed that while operating on the 120 VAC heating elements, the various recall modifications done to these units were totally ineffective, as they are solely intended for remedial action while operating on LP!!


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