Show Report: The 2020 AHR Expo

The 2020 AHR Expo, the world’s largest HVACR event, was held February 3-5, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. Supported by event co-sponsors, ASHRAE and AHRI, along with 31 other major industry organizations, and more than 1,900 exhibiting companies, AHR Expo is the industry’s largest global marketplace to network, share best practices and learn about innovative solutions from all over the world. With more than 200 free seminars, the education program featured new product and technology presentations, professional certifications, and education sessions focused on general industry-wide topics, engineering, industry trends, and topics tailored to attract the OEMs, engineers, contractors, facility operators, architects and other HVACR industry professionals from more than 160 countries. 

Chiller & Cooling Best Practices Magazine staff was present at the show reporting on refrigeration compressors, cooling towers, chillers and other applicable technologies to the commercial and industrial sector. 

The 2020 AHR Expo Hall covered more than 500,000 square feet. 


Johnson Controls invited the media to a panel discussion with top executives. Chairman and CEO George Oliver shared their view of three strategic directions of the commercial HVAC market (1) Decarbonization (2) Digitalization (3) Electrification.  He also said the merger with Tyco was going well and their new plant in Norman, Oklahoma is doing great!  With our auditing background, I found it very interesting when he said they are adding 1500 direct people to deploy solutions for customers.  

At the booth, JCI helped us learn what’s new with their York YZ magnetic bearing centrifugal chiller. The York YZ chiller is equipped with variable speed drive, a high-speed hermetic induction motor, a single stage compressor, OptiView Control Panel, the York-patented falling film evaporator and more. Cooling capacity on the YZ has very recently expanded up to, coincidentally, 2020 tons. The Johnson Controls booth also featured monitoring and IoT software they provide. Central Plant Optimization (CPO) offers predictive cost optimization and monitors system set points and KPIs for all facility utilities like chillers, cooling towers, heat pumps, etc. Users can then monitor and adapt with plant-unique inputs such as utility market rates, load predictions, weather and more. Johnson Controls Enterprise Management (JEM) software turns the sea of data from plants and buildings into insights and significant data points on an easy to read dashboard so users do not get lost in their data. 

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