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ASHRAE and the International Institute of Refrigeration (IIR) have announced the establishment of new definitions for five refrigeration keywords. The keywords are cooling, refrigeration, chilling, freezing and cold chain.

The refinements are the result of more than a year of discussion and were established to clarify, harmonize and standardize the meaning of basic terminology used in the HVAC&R industry. Now that these two key bodies have harmonized their nomenclature, the IIR is calling on all national and regional organizations and associations to adopt and disseminate the new definitions.

Says ASHRAE President, Sheila J. Hayter: “The new definitions will help those within our industry, as well as the general public, gain a clearer understanding of important refrigeration keywords that are often misused or too broadly defined.”

The new official definitions below will be used in the comprehensive online glossary, ASHRAE Terminology.

Cooling
(1) Removal of heat, usually resulting in a lower temperature and/or phase change
(2) Lowering temperature

Refrigeration
(1) Cooling of a space, substance or system to lower and/or maintain its temperature below the ambient one (removed heat is rejected at a higher temperature)
(2) Artificial cooling

Chilling 
Cooling of a substance without freezing it

Freezing 
Solidification phase change of a liquid or the liquid content of a substance, usually due to cooling

Cold Chain 
Series of actions and equipment applied to maintain a product within a specified low-temperature range from harvest/production to consumption