IOR Alternative Refrigerants learning programme goes from strength to strength

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Published: 08 March 2016


This month the IOR has seen the 1000th person register for its free REAL Alternatives e-learning programme. 

Launched almost exactly one year ago the programme now boast an uptake of about 30 new learners a month, with a learning community spread across UK, Poland, Italy, Germany, France and Belgium.

​With the industry moving quickly towards the wider use of alternatives and the concerns that engineers have a good understanding of the fundamentals related to new refrigerants like HFOs or R32, as well as the traditional alternatives such as hydrocarbons, carbon dioxide and ammonia, the programme has had a wide appeal.
Take up has been driven not just by the promotion campaign which included a series of on line launch events, talks at international exhibitions and conferences and an interactive website at www.realalternatives.eu.  
​The new F Gas Regulation that requires that all new trainees are given access to information about alternatives to replace high GWP refrigerants, and that similar information is made available to those who already hold an F gas certificate, has been pushing companies and training providers to sign up trainees as well as existing engineers.

Comments from those who have studied the modules  have also been very positive:
"I think the material is well written and in plain English that is easy to understand.”

“Overall very good with useful links to further resources” .
​The modules include self tests and links, and optional Assessment and Certification will be available shortly.

​Additional Translations

​Following a presentation to the DG Clima (the Commission representatives responsible for F Gas implementation across Europe), the REAL Alternatives project team has had several requests to provide additional translations of the material which is already available in six languages.

Consideration is being given to new programmes in Spanish, Portuguese, Finnish and Swedish. We are also speaking to the Commission about the possibility of sharing the material wider, in developing countries who are looking to move away from higher GWP HFCs in the coming years.

This programme, added to the already available REAL Zero which focused on leakage of HFCs, means that the IOR can provide an even wider range of opportunities for technicians to improve their skills and update their knowledge – without having to leave home! Everything is available on line including seven course modules, an e-library of industry resources and downloads of spreadsheets and templates.

The next opportunity to find out more about the programme and speak to the development team will be at the 2016 Gustav Lorentzen Natural Working Fluids conference in August in Edinburgh. A face to face training course based on elearning modules will be held as part of the conference, free to conference delegates. The course is being run by Jane Gartshore and Marco Buoni, who were both involved in developing the REAL Alternatives elearning.

​To find out more about the programme and discuss how this can be incorporated into existing courses or in-house training please contact Miriam Rodway at the IOR www.ior.org.uk