The compressor most people assume simply compresses the r22 or 410 a gas refrigerant. However most people don’t know that the compressors other job is to actually formed a vacuum as well. This vacuum is actually where all cooling is done. In order to understand this chemical process that is affected by a physical state change you need to understand how fluid dynamics actually work.  In Las Vegas a compressors are sometimes over worked

How a compressor works

Most people don’t recognize this, but if you put air in a jar and then suck the air out of the jar the jars temperature does go down. This is because all gases including oxygen hydrogen propane and r22 or 410a all react to a vacuum the same way. They all become cooler when they are in a vacuum state. R22 and 410a just seemed to produce the greatest cooling with the least amount of vacuum required to produce the desired result.

Conversely on the other side of the vacuum is actually a pressurized system. And like the same gases a compressed  pressurized gas will produced more heat this is common if you’ve ever aired up the tire pressure on your vehicle you may have noticed that in some cases there is heat the tire becomes warmer especially as you inflate it to maximum pressure. Most gases under pressure will get hotter. If you have a heat pump this heat is captured and used in the winter time by reversing the flow of the refrigerant through your air conditioning coils.

Different gases used in compressors

There are many other gases that respond well to compression and vacuum but many of them require more energy to produce the same result. Technology advances everyday and in our lifetime we will probably witness an air conditioner that produces the same cool air and uses only a fraction of the electricity to do so. This advancement will most likely not come in the form of a mechanical variation but of a chemical variation of the refrigerator.