Sanden Automotive Components Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sanden Holdings Corporation, announced that it has recently completed the development and industrialization of compressors for automotive air conditioning applying CO2 refrigerant. The company started supplying Daimler AG with the world’s first CO2 compressor for mass-produced passenger cars in May 2017 on a full scale.

Environmental regulations such as for prevention of ozone layer depletion or global warming are evolving rapidly around the world in order to cope with recent environmental problems occurring on a global scale. In accordance with these environmental policies, the European directive on mobile air conditioning systems (MACs) introduced a ban for the use of refrigerant gas with a global warming potential (GWP) higher than 150 applicable for all new cars sold on the EU market since 1 January 2017.

“Daimler chose Sanden for the development of the R744 compressor because of their extensive experience with this refrigerant and pioneering spirit towards new technologies. It has been quite a challenging project also for Daimler to get the R744 AC system launched in such short period. Therefore, the strategic partnership with Sanden has been very important and we are pleased about this successful launch,” said Dr Ralf Theurer, Project Leader R744, Daimler AG.

“This project truly represents the policy of Sanden Management; Create corporate value based on ‘environment’ utilizing our global strength and quality capabilities. We are contributing to the health of our planet by bringing to the market a robust product, which has been designed by a global team. I am proud of this launch and very grateful for the co-operation with Daimler. Serving our customer whilst engaging in environmentally friendly activities is a privilege,” said Tsuguo Ito, President of Sanden Automotive Components Corporation. “My target is to expand this technology and use the knowledge gained throughout the development to grow in a sustainable manner in the world market.”

Advanced technological skills regarding high pressure resistance and airtightness structure are required in commercializing the CO2 compressor, because operating pressure for CO2 refrigerant is 5 times greater than that of HFC-134a. For several years, the Sanden group has actively pursued adoption of CO2 refrigerant in a wide range of products including freezing and refrigerating showcases, and vending machines, all of which are receiving high praise from customers around the world. For the development of the new automotive compressor, in 2014 Sanden established a project team reporting directly to the president of Sanden Holdings Corporation (formerly Sanden Corporation). The joint Japan-Germany based team completed the development of this product. The product development was accomplished in record time by adapting CO2 refrigerant technology incorporated in various other products to enhance the basic performance of this new compressor. The compressors are produced at Yattajima plant, Gunma prefecture in Japan.

Product Features

  • Cooling performance and function exceeding conventional compressors with one fifth of capacity (31cc)
    • Packaging and weight equivalent to conventional compressors
    • High pressure resistance to enable performance at 5 times high operating pressure
    • Noise reduction structure with new internal design feature

Improved stability and safety achieved by new control method

With environmentally-friendly vehicles becoming popular worldwide, attention is being focused on CO2 refrigerant combined with electric compressor and heat pump system, for their abilities to deliver lower energy consumption. The Sanden Group continues to contribute to global environmental conservation and the innovation of the automotive industry worldwide, by offering advanced technology and high quality compressors.