Revisiting Refrigerant Release Estimates
Author: Douglas T. Reindl, Ph.D., P.E. and Todd B. Jekel, Ph.D., P.E.
In 2008, we presented a paper titled “Estimating Refrigerant Release Quantities,” which recommended techniques for estimating the quantity of refrigerant released in incidents involving vapor only, low temperature liquid only, and high-temperature liquid that would include flash gas formation in the expansion to atmospheric pressure. In Appendix A of this paper, we provide a reprint of that 2008 publication, including minor corrections. In this paper, we revisit the topic of estimating refrigerant release quantities using two past incidents to demonstrate the complexities that can arise in this process. Finally, we include a set of tables that provides estimates of refrigerant release rates for both vapor and flashing liquid flows over a range of pressures for increments of leak opening sizes.