With record-breaking temperatures looming ahead like rippling walls of heat from sun-baked asphalt, it behooves one to check that air conditioning units are in proper working condition ahead of time. For those considering an upgrade, Philadelphia-based Likuma Labs has unveiled a new product that addresses the frustrations experienced with many window air conditioners. Noria is designed to be smaller, lighter, and quieter, while offering full-room circulation and smart connectivity.

Window-mounted air conditioners tend to be recognized for their boxy bulk and exorbitant number of ventilation slats. Noria blends form with function, featuring smooth curves in a design that measures 18.25 in wide, 15 in deep, and a mere 5.8 in tall (46.3 x 38.1 x 14.7 cm). At almost half the size of a standard 5,000 BTU/hr window air conditioner, Noria blocks less of the view through a window while being slim enough to slide under beds for off-season storage.

Noria also features wrestle-free, two-step installation with single- or double-hung windows measuring between 21 and 36 in (53 and 91 cm) wide. Users first install and secure the window frame adapter before sliding and locking the air conditioner into place. Given its rounded sides and comparatively light 30-lb (13.6-kg) weight, installing and removing Noria can be handled by one person.

When it comes to cooling, Noria is effective for areas up to 160 sq ft (14.8 sq m). But unlike most window air conditioners that blow directly in, Noria angles its cold air up towards the ceiling. By creating a convective flow throughout the entire room, this method is designed to help eliminate warm air pockets and minimize recirculation of cold air. The result? Better climate control with less energy used.

There's only one knob on Noria, having the simple job of adjusting temperature. Users can also turn off the unit's compressor in order to bring fresh outside air in when things cool down outside. While some may miss the option to balance fan speed with noise output, the team has developed the hardware to be capable of operating at 50 dB. Noria can run all day, generating low-level sounds somewhere between a quiet library and normal conversation.

Although Wi-Fi and IoT compatibility is under consideration, Noria does offer Bluetooth connectivity with iOS and Android devices. The mobile app will allow users to remotely adjust the thermostat, control multiple units, and set daily/weekly schedules for automatic operation and smart energy usage.

The Noria air conditioner is currently funding on Kickstarter, having raised almost half of its US$250,000 goal in a day, with another 44 days left to go. Pledges start at $299, saving $100 off the planned retail price.

The company claims to have extensively modeled thermal performance and user experience on functioning prototypes. Contributed funds will go towards the design of injection molding, alpha prototyping, PCB development, testing, tooling, production, and UL safety testing. If everything goes according to plan, backers can expect shipments to start as early as April, 2017.

Check out the video below to see how Noria installs and operates.

Sources: Noria Home

View gallery - 5 images