Microsoft founder and one of the world’s richest people, Bill Gates, injected funds worth 20 million US dollars or around Rp. 298 billion (Rp. 14,900 rupiah exchange rate) to a startup called Blue Frontier.
The funding is channeled through Breakthrough Energy Ventures, an investment company founded by Gates that focuses on developing new energy and reducing Earth’s carbon emissions.
Meanwhile, Blue Frontier focuses on developing an air conditioning system that is cleaner than the current Air Conditioner (AC) technology.
In designing its product, Blue Frontier will use a concentrated salt solution to produce a cleaner AC system. This is because the current AC system is considered dirty because it requires energy and emits greenhouse gases including hydrofluorocarbons and carbon dioxide.
In addition, climate change will continue to make hot weather more frequent, so people will continue to depend on “dirty” air conditioners.
With the technology it has developed, Blue Frontier claims its system can reduce energy consumption by up to 90 percent, as compiled by KompasTekno from Gizmodo, Tuesday (2/8/2022).
For its application, this system can be applied to non-residential buildings or new buildings that support rooftops. Unfortunately, the Florida-based startup did not explain how the cooling system they developed worked.
According to a Blue Frontier document uploaded on the company’s website, a concentrated saline solution will act as a desiccant. The solution is concentrated through a heat pump which then evaporates half the water and is held until cooling is required.
When the solution is in contact with the air, the moisture in the air is absorbed by the water vapor, thereby reducing the air temperature indirectly.
531 million tonnes of carbon dioxide comes from AC
In March, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (Xerox PARC) released reports on the amount of carbon released each year.
The study found that of the 1,950 million tons of carbon dioxide released each year from the energy used to power air conditioners, 531 million of it is used to cool the air, and another 599 million tons to remove moisture.
The other 820 million tonnes came from refrigerant leaks and from greenhouse gases emitted during the manufacture and distribution of air conditioning units.
These emissions are predicted by NREL and Xerox PARC will get worse as more people install air conditioners, especially in India, China, and Indonesia.
For this reason, Blue Frontier has developed a technology that is able to produce a cooling system that is more efficient and safer for the environment.