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HVAC Class Gets New Tech

The Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) class at Milliken Technical Center has recently acquired state-of-the-art training equipment for its classroom. The program has three new training units, each based on a different cooling or refrigeration system used in the industry; the largest of which resembles the outside component of a residential air conditioner with a large flat-screen monitor on the front. The training aids are the latest in HVAC education technology, which allows students to benefit from a more customized learning experience.

All of the units are created by iConnect Training, a producer of HVAC training aids based out of western New York. Each unit features a control panel, which allows a teacher to program a flaw into the system that can then be troubleshot by the students. In addition to the Residential Air Conditioning Trainer, the classroom has a Basic Refrigeration Trainer, and a Table-Top Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Trainer. The units were acquired through a grant.

“Before we had technology like this, we’d have to manually change a piece of equipment to train the students,” said Nick DeBlanco, HVAC teacher at MTC. “You’d have to essentially break something, for them to then fix it, which isn’t always an exact science. Now, we can have the system reflect an error very precisely, so that they see exactly the circumstances we want to see. This is real-world troubleshooting for the students.”

High school HVAC training is provided by the Eastern Long Island Academy of Applied Technology, the high school Career and Technical Education Program of Eastern Suffolk BOCES. The Academy has three campuses in Bellport, Oakdale, and Riverhead.




A man in a khaki shirt looks at an iPad in front of an AC unit with a TV monitor on it

Antonio Camacho, Sachem CSD, checks readings on an iPad from the iConnect Residential Air Conditioning Trainer.

A teacher stands in front of a large monitor, teaching two students about the equipment

Nick DeBlanco, HVAC teacher at MTC, uses the iConnect Residential Air Conditioning Trainer to illustrate the relationship between pressure and temperature in an air conditioning system.