Membrane-Based Absorption Refrigeration Systems

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Gainesville, Florida
Project Term:
09/01/2010 - 08/31/2015

Technology Description:

The University of Florida is improving a refrigeration system that uses low-quality heat to provide the energy needed to drive cooling. This system, known as absorption refrigeration system (ARS), typically consists of large coils that transfer heat. Unfortunately, these large heat exchanger coils are responsible for bulkiness and high cost of ARS. The University of Florida is using new materials as well as system design innovations to develop nanoengineered membranes to allow for enhanced heat exchange that reduces bulkiness. This design allows for compact, cheaper, and more reliable use of ARS that use solar or waste heat.

Potential Impact:

If successful, the University of Florida would help development of an inexpensive, high-performance heat-powered refrigeration system for cooling buildings.


Waste heat or solar heat-based technology for air conditioning would help reduce reliance on fossil fuels—or strengthening U.S. energy security.


Greater use of heat-based technology for air conditioners would reduce greenhouse gas production related to electricity generation and could increase demand for solar power—increasing use of renewable energy for cooling.


Widespread adoption of this technology could reduce energy consumption for air conditioning of buildings—providing consumers with cost savings on energy bills.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Eric Rohlfing
Project Contact:
Prof. Saeed Moghaddam
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Project Contact Email:

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