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HFO-1234yf Versus Alternatives

The MAC Directive requirement of an automotive refrigerant with a GWP of less than 150 was a major challenge, considering that the refrigerant used in cars today has a GWP of 1430.

DuPont has worked in collaboration with automotive industry stakeholders since 2006 and with  Honeywell under a joint development agreement since 2007 to deliver a refrigerant to support the new climate regulation. DuPont invested significantly in research and development, testing evaluations and manufacturing to support the introduction of HFO-1234yf refrigerant, which is sold by DuPont as Opteon™ YF refrigerant. The new product has a GWP of 4, which surpasses the MAC Directive requirement and is 99.7% lower than the GWP of the currently used refrigerant.

GWP
  Current Refrigerant (R-134a)1430
  MAC Directive Requirement150 or less
  HFO-1234yf4

Automakers have had a number of years to identify a refrigerant that complies with the new directive. The industry has evaluated R-152a, CO2, and HFO-1234yf as alternatives for MAC Directive compliance. Among these three options, the industry determined that HFO-1234yf is the most suitable alternative when considering performance, lifecycle climate performance, safety, implementation costs, and industry readiness.(1) Nevertheless, automakers would be permitted to use R-152a or CO2 to comply with the MAC Directive on January 1, 2013, and they certainly have had time to implement these alternatives.

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  1.  November 2009 SAE press release