Originally posted by RJHinds
Did you know that a federal law was passed that made it illegal to release freon into the air because it depleted the ozone layer causing a hole in the atmosphere that many believed also caused global warming?
It DID deplete the ozone layer. That was clear. That law was passed around 1988 or so.
If he did the freon inflate thing in 1985 it would have been legal.
It actually effected my job in particular.
I worked for a scientific outfit called Varian ATT. We used freon to cool the machines I worked on, Ion Implanters. Google them if you want to know more, it would take many words to describe.
Anyway, freon is an excellent coolant liquid, very clean and if it leaks out, it evaporates quickly leaving no residue behind so the cleanup is nothing.
Varian and everyone else using freon as a coolant had to come up with something else to cool with.
One company I worked with later on, around 1990, Commodore Computers in Horsham Pa, decided to cool their ion implanter with mineral oil.
Mineral oil doesn't cool nearly as efficiently as freon AND it is flammable.
The ion implanter has several levels of power supplies, some at 5 volts and hundreds of amps, 20,000 volts at much lower amperage, and 200,000 volts at even lower currents. The thing is, all those supplies can short out and create sparks that could theoretically catch the machine on fire.
Freon is almost impossible to burn so in that respect it was a much better cooling liquid.
I PROVED mineral oil was flammable and got royally chewed out for that demo🙂
They also did not change the cooling liquid.
One day I came in to work and found a nice fountain of mineral oil shooting right into the cleanroom. A frigging royal mess to clean up.
I did enjoy that 'told you so' moment but they still kept up with the mineral oil coolant.
Another tact was to use DI water. De-inoized water that is composed of mainly water molecules and nothing else.
That is the purest water you can ever make, 100% water molecules.
The problem with DI water is, although it is a great coolant liquid, Water is a polar molecule, a plus charge at one end and a minus charge at the other. With ordinary tap water this is not a problem because the contaminants in the water clump up the water molecules to create a non corrosive liquid, mostly anyway.
DI water is ultra pure water and as such, is 100% polar molecule. That makes it very corrosive to almost all metals. It chews up metal connectors and causes a lot of leaks.
That caused a problem for one machine at the University of Cincinnati I was assigned to rebuild, a gift from Texas Instruments.
I had to change all the stainless steel fittings to teflon, dozens of them, in order to run DI water as a coolant.
So I am very familiar with the changeover from Freon to DI water as a coolant!