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With approximately 80 percent of exhibitors indicating they will be displaying new or enhanced products, systems and technologies at the International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition, Jan. 30-Feb. 1, in Las Vegas, the expo floor is slated to address a myriad of interests from every facet of the industry.
Exhibitor innovations will also reflect numerous HVACR industry trends, including those associated with burgeoning growth across both the residential and commercial construction markets.
“It’s exciting to see such enthusiasm around the rebounding North American building and construction industry, and subsequent growth in demand for the latest evolution of products, technologies and services the HVACR industry has to offer,” said Clay Stevens, president of International Exposition Company. “With this resurgence, a spirit of ingenuity and creativity has flourished among HVACR manufacturers, and we’re pleased to present the venue at which the results of this will be displayed for 2017.”
At-large, innovations to be unveiled at the 2017 AHR Expo echo several major trends driven by the growing construction market, both in North America and the world over. These themes include:
The development of plumbing products and systems, which are foundational to the built environment, has remained important as related products and systems, industry codes and standards, and general construction methods become ever more complex.
New solutions spanning the gamut from valve and pumping systems, to piping and fittings will be found throughout the 2017 Show floor, and include:
Since its inception, AHR Expo has served as a platform for launching the latest in heating equipment innovations, and this product category remains one of the most active for technological development yet today.
Building trends that drive need for smaller-footprint products, as well as those that can be integrated into existing spaces, have cultivated a great deal of ingenuity among heating product manufacturers in 2017. Among many new heating equipment developments to be exhibited are:
Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy
With the rebounding construction industry, a matured understanding and approach to the “green building” movement has been cultivated. Now a common initiative, building products and practices offering energy efficient and sustainable benefits have become widely applied, with “above and beyond” solutions falling into new categories of ultra efficiency and disruptive technology.
Several new advancements that contribute to greater efficiency and sustainability will be found on the 2017 AHR Expo floor. These include:
Ventilation remains a popular focus among HVACR manufacturers, particularly in respect to the IAQ movement and widespread efforts to improve indoor comfort and health. With IAQ mandates now part of evolving building codes and standards, innovative ventilation products and systems that meet these parameters are being developed at a rapid pace.
Products that provide ease of installation, particularly in retrofit and limited-space applications, as well as those that offer elevated levels of energy efficiency, are being seen as cutting-edge ventilation developments for 2017. Examples of these include:
Air-Conditioning & Refrigeration
Demand for even greater energy efficiency from air-conditioning and refrigeration equipment is a consistent trend that carries forth into 2017, especially with continued growth in the commercial construction market. Flexible, modular and ductless cooling solutions, including those with smaller footprints and ideal for retrofit and general residential applications, also remain in high demand.
The response from manufacturers to these and other market demands can be seen across numerous innovations on display at the 2017 AHR Expo, including:
A premium fluid cooler that combines a compact, lightweight footprint with quiet, energy-efficient operation for heat exchange in either VRF, geothermal loop or economizer functions of an HVAC chiller system.
Building Automation & Control
As demand for data acquisition, and the crucially related controls that collect it, has remained strong as a means for most efficiently employing building automation and information system data, innovation has continued to follow. Software and control system developers have remained hard at work over the past year in further elevating the power of building automation, and will bring an impressive array of technologies to the market in 2017.
Many solutions have been engineered around BACnet – a data communication protocol for building automation and control networks developed under the auspices of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers. BACnet provides a foundation of consistency and quality that further streamlines the integration of building automation and control systems, and has also become an internationally recognized standard, including by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
In addition to new and more powerful building automation systems, demand has grown for BAS solutions that provide specific or niche functionality. Those designed to perform optimally in certain applications (ex. critical environments), with specific mechanical equipment or in targeted types of construction (ex. retrofit) are becoming welcome additions to the landscape of choices in building automation and controls.
Numerous new and evolved building automation solutions will be exhibited at the upcoming 2017 AHR Expo, such as:
Indoor Air Quality
The role of indoor air quality within the greater building schematic has continued to strengthen, as awareness of its importance in promoting comfortable and healthy indoor spaces has grown in parallel. The North American HVACR industry is being looked to as a leader in promoting further IAQ innovation, especially while demand for new technologies only continues to increase.
Some of the latest IAQ solutions – addressing issues from air particulate management, to emissions detection, to fresh air intake and general air exchange –will be seen for the first time at the 2017 AHR Expo, including:
Instruments & Controls
Instrumentation and related controls remain key to the success of in-field mechanical systems personnel – from ensuring reliable long-term equipment operation, to monitoring and troubleshooting equipment functions.
Whether integrated within a larger product or system, or used independently, HVACR instruments and controls are now relied upon in greater and more crucial ways, particularly as mechanical equipment becomes more technically sophisticated.
A selection of new instruments and controls to be exhibited in 2017 includes:
Software has become a part of nearly every facet of the HVACR landscape, enabling functions related to mechanical equipment and system design, setup, performance and troubleshooting.
As construction activity remains on the rise, software’s role has become even more important in providing tools that optimize business management, and bridge the gap of sophistication between mechanical equipment and those that install and service it.
The 2017 Show provides concrete examples of the demand for new and powerful software solutions across all areas of the HVACR industry, including:
Tools & Contractor Suppliers
Facing greater demand for their labor as construction activity becomes more robust, mechanical contractors are seeking tools and supplies that can streamline functions and deliver genuine on-the-job time savings.
Having forecasted this demand, several 2017 AHR Expo exhibitors have developed tools and supplies to answer the charge, including:
Innovation and creativity among 2017 AHR Expo exhibitors extends into numerous additional categories, with products, technologies, services and other resources including: