Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) refers to an HVAC technology coming from Daikin Industries (Japan) in 1982. VRFs, as the name suggests, makes use of refrigerant as a medium for heating and cooling. The conditioning of this refrigerant happens through single outdoor condensing unit. The circulation happens to rest of the door units within the building.
The factors that drive the variable refrigerant flow (VRF) system market include ever-increasing demand for ventilation, air conditioning, energy-efficient heating, governments’ initiatives for easing FDI norms in real estate sector, and growth in construction industry. VRF system has reached its saturation in North America and Europe. However, in the APAC, the same Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) system market is expected to grow at the fastest pace; thanks to increase in smart living in developing economies like India. The other adopters of VRF in the APAC include South Korea, and China.
The running trends in VRF system market include VRF HVAC systems’ polarization and VRF control systems’ compatibility. Of late, user-friendly VRF systems (the ones having LCD touchscreens) have been introduced; which do combine VRF and air conditioning for controlling air conditioning systems. In Japan, VRFs are used in almost half of the midsize office buildings and 33% of huge commercial buildings.
The current scenario is such that we have dedicated gateways to connect VRFs with BMS (Building Management Systems) and home automation controllers to facilitate centralized monitoring and controlling. Besides, these gateways do provide remote access to every HVAC indoor unit over Internet; thereby having incorporated a friendly and simple user interface.
In South Korea, Samsung and LG have been prominent with respect to electronics. However, they do not publicize much on variable refrigerant flow system (VRF); in spite of being the major suppliers in the market. IN Japan, apart from Daikin, Panasonic, Fujitsu, Toshiba are ruling the roost.