The air-source heat pump has been widely used in industrial refrigeration and central air-conditioning applications because of its unique superiority. An important consideration in the design of heat pump is improving its COP (coefficient of performance). In this paper, the results of experimental investigation on the effects of alternative refrigerants (R22, R134a, R404A and R407C) and economizer on the performance of heat pump are presented. The COP of the heat pump used R134a is up to 4.5% higher than R22, but its capacity got a 37.08% decrease. The refrigerant R407C applied in heat pump can improve the capacity up to 7.86% than R22, but its COP shows a decrease up to 5.92%. The refrigerant R404A used in heat pump will result in poor capacity and COP compared to R22. The economizer system used in heat pump will improve the COP, but as the superfeed pressure of the economizer increases, the system COP increases first, and then drops. So there exists an optimal superfeed pressure of the economizer for the best COP. Also, the effect of the economizer on the screw compressor performance is analyzed by recording the P-v indicator diagram.

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