College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Magnetic refrigeration cleaner and more efficient

A new cooling technology — cleaner, more efficient, and with the potential to have broad-ranging effects on global warming — is just around the corner, according to Karl A. Gschneidner Jr., Anson Marston Distinguished Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, and senior scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory.

After decades in research, magnetic refrigeration is close to being a commercially viable alternative to traditional refrigeration methods, which rely on the compression of gases. In the future, air conditioning and refrigeration could be 20 to 30 percent more energy efficient, reducing greenhouse gases and eliminating the need for environmentally hazardous chemical coolants now used.

Read the full story.