A non-intrusive refrigerant charge level indicator includes a structure for measuring at least one temperature at an outside surface of a two-phase refrigerant line section. The measured temperature can be used to determine the refrigerant charge status of an HVAC system, and can be converted to a pressure of the refrigerant in the line section and compared to a recommended pressure range to determine whether the system is under-charged, properly charged or over-charged. A non-intrusive method for assessing the refrigerant charge level in a system containing a refrigerant fluid includes the step of measuring a temperature at least one outside surface of a two-phase region of a refrigerant containing refrigerant line, wherein the temperature measured can be converted to a refrigerant pressure within the line section.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC05-000R22725 between the United States Department of Energy and UT-Battelle, LLC.