Webasto launches low-profile HVAC unit

webasto hvacWebasto Thermo & Comfort has introduced its SP80 HVAC. The low-profile, ceiling-mounted HVAC will make it possible for OEMs and cabin manufacturers to design vehicle-control spaces with increased headroom, greater visibility and an enhanced sense of comfort. In contrast to the large, sharp-edged, rectangular sheet-metal boxes that characterize the majority of ceiling-mounted HVAC systems in today’s heavy equipment, Webasto’s new SP80 HVAC looks somewhat inconspicuous, according to an announcement.

At 50 percent the size and 20 percent the weight of average HVAC systems, SP80 hugs a cabin’s ceiling. The unit’s 3.15 in.-thick injection-molded plastic envelope features rounded edges and a unique central air intake configuration that allows air outlets to be precisely oriented to fit a cab’s particular design. Its 25.03 in.-width and 20.39 in.-length also will make the unit easy to integrate into any cab design.

“Design engineers will be able to create cabins with far greater comfort, visibility and overall space,” says Mark Denny, president and CEO, Webasto Thermo & Comfort North America. “The SP80’s ergonomic advantages are matched by its ultra-light weight, enabling cab roof structures to be lighter as well.”

Weighing less than 15.5 lbs., Webasto’s SP80 owes its lightweight and compact size to advanced engineering. The use of a reversed curved fan blade, low-profile evaporators and heat exchangers help keep the unit thin and reduce its mass. Though the SP80 is small and light, its heating and cooling power are exemplary, the company says. With its high-efficiency fan and state-of-the-art air handling system, the 12-volt unit outperforms others in airflow as well as cooling and heating performance. The SP80 has the capacity to deliver 7.8 kW of cooling power and 6.8 kW of heating power.

Webasto’s new product was also recently honored by the Mobile Air Conditioning Society (MACS). The SP80 HVAC won MACS Worldwide Award for “Best Use of Technology in a New Product.”

“Webasto’s SP80 is such a dramatic departure from other cab HVAC systems, and we think that had everything to do with winning the MACS Worldwide Award,” Denny says. “When it comes to engineering-in enhanced visibility, comfort and safety, our SP80 is a game changer.”

Until now, engineering a cab for heavy equipment meant having to contend with mounting a large metal HVAC box on the cab ceiling. That box commonly impaired an operator’s sight line and took up space where it was at a premium. The standard configuration had an air intake on one side and air outlets on the other, with little variation or options to alter a device’s output to integrate with the cab’s design, the company says.

“Webasto produces millions of products for passenger cars, heavy-duty on- and off-road vehicles, as well as watercraft, and used its experience and continuous dialog with OEMs worldwide to engineer a ceiling-mounted cab HVAC that was truly outside the traditional box,” Denny says. “With our SP80, precise cab integration isn’t only easy; it’s been engineered into the unit. Our unit-top, central air intake gives the SP80 almost unlimited flexibility in the way processed air is introduced back into the cab environment.”

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