Testing Diversification

The AHRI lab diversification effort is on track to meet the 2019 diversification goals. With the successful correlation and lab approval in the unitary small heat pump program, the diversification plan approved by the executive committee more than three years ago will be complete.

Members and staff, with the cooperation of the independent laboratories, spent many hours on the diversification effort to ensure proper correlation of the test facilities. In 2020, the newly qualified independent laboratories will conduct 50 percent or about 700 tests in six certification programs that were part of the diversification plan. In the same year, AHRI will issue a request for proposals from labs for testing contracts for all 40 certification programs in an open bidding process without the testing quotas prescribed in the diversification plan.

The continued demand and recognition of AHRI certification necessitates the increase in AHRI’s global testing capabilities . In 2019, AHRI’s technical services team will complete correlation testing for several programs at the CETIAT laboratory in Lyon, France, and at the GMPI laboratory in Hefei, China. At CETIAT, correlation testing has begun for unitary large equipment (ULE) and air handling units (AHU, AHUC). AHRI is also expanding on the success of regional variable refrigerant flow (VRF) testing at the GMPI laboratory in Hefei by auditing and correlating additional samples to support regional variable speed mini split (VSMS) testing.

Certification Program Selection Tool and Executive Dashboard
AHRI is excited about its work on the next era of business intelligence for members and certification participants. AHRI certification engineers now use a data-driven selection tool that uses predictive analytics and machine learning. The selection tool scans listed products in the AHRI Directory to help engineers make informed decisions during the annual verification testing product selection process. In its continuous effort to increase the value of the program to its participants, AHRI is preparing to introduce a new certification Executive Dashboard this December. It will be available to senior management of certification program participants, and will include information on the certification process, industry rating overview, and regulatory compliance analytics.

With the expected 2023 regulatory changes in the DOE test procedure for unitary small equipment and central air conditioners and heat pumps, AHRI has developed an online application for DOE’s energy efficiency descriptors: SEER and HSPF. The App calculates SEER/HSPF in accordance with current AHRI 210/240(2017) and DOE rules, and the new SEER2/HSPF2 that will be in effect in 2023. The application has built-in data visualization and analysis features to aid engineering and compliance decisions. AHRI members have access to the SEER/HSPF App at http://cert.ahrinet.org.