The Air Conditioning Refrigeration Institute (ARI) has issued a white paper about noise criteria levels for engineers, who mostly rely on the criteria levels in manufacturers' catalogs to give them an estimate of noise levels in their proposed finish spaces as well as a comparison between manufacturers.

The paper, entitled, “Noise Criteria Levels - What They Mean and What They Do Not Mean,” discusses the ARI Standard 885-98 (with 2002 Addendum). It explains how to read the single-number noise criteria levels, how to relate ARI's standard to a specific job and how to compare manufacturers' sound power levels. Visit to read the white paper.

In other news, ARI has awarded a contract for magnetic cooling research to the University of Wisconsin. The project will develop modeling and simulation tools to assess the system performance potential of magnetocaloric cooling. HVACR manufacturers and researchers would be able to use this information as an assessment tool for evaluating the potential of magnetocaloric systems as new materials are developed with higher operating temperatures.

The project is jointly headed by Dr. Gregory Nellis of the University of Wisconsin and Dr. Carl Zimm of Astronautics Technology Center. It is scheduled for completion by Sept. 30, 2004.