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Search for Alternative Refrigerants: A Molecular Approach



Mark O. McLinden, David Didion


The impending production limitation on the fully halogenated CFC refrigerants is causing an intense search for possible substitutes. This study reviews the historical development of the CFC refrigerants and the relationship between molecular structure and the ozone depletion and greenhouse warming potentials. It then demonstrates that the halogenated hydrocarbons (a class of compounds that includes the CFCs) remain the most promising candidates for replacements based on both theoretical thermodynamic arguments and an empirical data base search. The inevitable practical tradeoffs among the various candidates are seen to vary in a systematic fashion based on molecular structure.
Proceedings Title
IIR (International Institute of Refrigeration) Conference
Conference Dates
July 1, 1988


refrigerants, hydrocarbons, molecular structure, ozone depletion, databases, temperature, thermodynamics, evaluation, chlorofluorocarbons, flammability, entropy


McLinden, M. and Didion, D. (1988), Search for Alternative Refrigerants: A Molecular Approach, IIR (International Institute of Refrigeration) Conference, -1, [online], (Accessed June 23, 2024)


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Created July 1, 1988, Updated February 19, 2017