Over the past year, I have been attending ASERCOM Compressors Certification Committee (CC) meetings and I would like to share this experience with you: who participates and what is done during such committee meetings.
The certification for compressors by ASERCOM was established 15 years ago to ensure that manufacturers provide products at harmonized rating conditions. How does it work?
ASERCOM compressors manufacturers members, such Bitzer, Bock, Danfoss, Emerson, Dorin, Frascold and Tecumseh have scheduled Committee sessions on a quarterly basis. A technical expert or engineer, with substantial technical experience in the compressor industry, represents each member. Furthermore, at each meeting, a representative of TÜV notified body (Product certification) also participates. Each participant signs a declaration of compliance and competition and is committed not to disclose any commercial information, regarding topics like market or price.
All discussions should have a technical focus. Several weeks before the meeting, ASERCOM members send the compressor listing they want to be certified to the Committee including displacement, cooling capacity, power input across the application envelop – all by using a specific ASERCOM Certification software solution. Based on this data, every member evaluates the plausibility of the information provided: curve data accuracy, from a theoretical thermodynamical standpoint (volumetric & isentropic efficiency) and practical points of view versus similar models (same displacement, refrigerants, etc.). Based on the analysis, each member votes “For” or “Against” the certification. This is may be the most interesting part of the meeting. I was amazed by the tough discussion that CC members usually have during the session. This is where the CC group leader (Julian Pfaffl) has the most active and important role, to ensure that the debate remains good natured even if opinions can be a bit controversial. I can testify that some models have been rejected by the Committee and will never be approved due to non-acceptance by the CC members. It actually occurs!
During that day, I actually observed that CC members did not reach agreement. As the compressor manufacturer still wanted to obtain the ASERCOM certification, it was decided to test the product in a third party laboratory (Competitor or independently accredited laboratory). Should the actual product performance not be in the allowed tolerances of the published data, it will either be rejected by the CC, or the manufacturer will have to rerate the published data to the level of measurement data to gain the certification.
During the session, the selection software tool and product catalogues are already reviewed to ensure that performance are in accordance with the certified data.
So contrary to the previous image of having a meeting which was “just” an approval Committee, I can ensure you the debate and the relation across CC members are very dynamic and all members try to have an attitude which helps improve our Refrigeration industry.
Thanks again to all CC members for their openness and commitment to make it happen and welcome a marketing person in their technical expert group:
Julian Pfaffl (Bitzer, Chairman), Gaël Renevier (Tecumseh), Jan Jedlicka (Emerson CT, Convenor), Marco Perri (Frascold, secretary) , Cyrille Dumas (Danfoss CC), Lorenzo Fanetti (Dorin), Markus Polzer (GEA Bock), Peter Schnepf (TÜV SÜD)
Some key activity information on the Certification Committee:
· Over 500 compressors certified by ASERCOM
· 80 new models presented per year
· 200 compressors data checked per year