Call for abstracts

AIRAH is now calling for abstracts for the Outlook 2020 International HVAC&R conference. We are seeking abstracts on an array of subjects that address and discuss the impact global forces are having on the future of the HVAC&R industry.
  • Innovation and disruption
  • Climate change: Sustainability, adaptation and resilience
  • Urbanisation 
  • Demographic and social change
  • Regulation and legislation.

The technical conference committee is seeking abstracts that link to these global trends and can include the following subject areas but are not limited to: 

Innovation and disruption

HVAC&R faces constant disruption from emerging technology, regulation and standards, and the industry continues to respond with innovative solutions. This stream will focus on the sources and impact of disruption and the latest innovations within HVAC&R. Possible topics include:
  • Digitisation in the built environment 
  • Advanced manufacturing, prefabrication and construction
  • Supply chain innovation
  • Innovations in HVAC equipment 
    • Refrigerants
    • Equipment
    • Building automation and control technologies 
    • Energy efficiency and optimisation
  • Advances in building design and its impact on HVAC design 
    • Resilience 
    • Indoor environment quality
    • Future approaches to design and installation
    • Facade technology
    • BIM, digitisation and HVAC
    • Building simulation
  • HVAC ownership operation and management 
    • Machine learning
    • Data analytics, cloud services, IoT
    • Asset management and maintenance
  • HVAC research 
    • Innovative research projects
    • HVAC R&D in Australia.

Climate change: Sustainability, adaptation and resilience

The effects of climate change are undeniable. A greater focus on how we design better HVAC solutions that improve our quality of life while minimising the effects of global climate change is the challenge for the next century. Topics in this stream may cover:
  • Carbon impact of buildings
  • Socially responsible HVAC&R
  • HVAC and energy management
    • HVAC’s role in demand response
    • Future of power generation and HVAC implications
    • Building physics and thermal storage
    • Microgrids, PV, batteries and HVAC
    • Solar HVAC.


Populations are moving in ever-increasing numbers to urban centres, changing the face of our cities and regional areas. Our response to the design and operation of existing and new building infrastructure and the HVAC systems that support them is critical in ensuring we keep our urban spaces liveable. They will also need to cope with more people, densification and increased demand on infrastructure. Topics of interest include:
  • Preloved buildings 
  • District heating and cooling 
  • Smart cities technologies
  • Heat islands.

Demographic, social and organisational change

Demographic shifts in our population impact not only our built environment, but also the way we live, work and play. As our population ages, increasing demand for services and ensuring our elderly are able to survive heatwaves and cold snaps requires greater planning and thoughtful design. This stream will focus on the role that HVAC plays in supporting and protecting communities from the impact of climate change, and how changes in organisation and workplace planning need new HVAC solutions. Possible topics include:
  • Changes in workplace design
  • The aging population and the built environment 
  • HVAC education and training, needs, issues and innovation
  • Project management and improved project delivery methods, IPD, etc
  • Diversity.

Regulation and legislation

Regulation, legislation and compliance affect all aspects of the industry, and can drive innovation. This stream will focus on possible future changes in the regulatory environment in which we live and work, and how HVAC must adapt to meet these changes. Topics include:
  • Building standards
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Fire and life safety
  • Standards and guidelines
  • Changes in national and international regulations – heading towards net-zero 
    • COP21 – how do we get there and HVAC’s role?
    • NCC – new energy efficiency provisions and the impacts on building and HVAC design
    • Green Star, WELL, LEED – driving design outcomes 
    • Global refrigerant phase-down programs and the implications for HVAC.

Case studies (but not limited to) 

The committee welcomes and encourages case study examples of excellence as well as lessons learnt.  All case studies will be considered.
  • Innovative HVAC design projects
  • Innovative HVAC installation projects
  • Innovative HVAC maintenance approaches.

Suggest a site visit, panel session or masterclass

The committee is interested in hearing from parties who can provide a suitable site visit for attendees, before or during the conference. We are also open to proposals for panel sessions or masterclasses with industry experts on topics related to the conference themes. Please contact the AIRAH Conference and Events Coordinator for more information.

By submitting an abstract, speakers are also agreeing to submit a technical paper and PowerPoint presentation before the conference should their application to present be successful. 

Presentations must not contain overtly commercial material or include trade names in titles. 

The conference committee has the final say on accepted presentations. 

All submissions must include: 
  • 300-word abstract
  • 100-word condensed abstract
  • 100-word biography 
  • High-resolution presenter photo. 

Presentations will be 25 minutes in length, including question and answers. Abstracts should be emailed to AIRAH’s Conference and Events Coordinator, Emily McLaughlin, by Friday, March 27, 2020.