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Frigesco wins innovation award for pioneering flash defrost system

Frigesco wins innovation award for pioneering flash defrost system

UK:  Frigesco’s ground-breaking flash defrost system for refrigeration plant has won the industry’s top award for innovation.

The technology, which can reduce annual running costs for supermarket cooling by up to 20 per cent, received the award for Refrigeration Innovation of the Year (Component or Process) at the Cooling Industry Awards 2014, held at The London Hilton, Park Lane.

The patented technology uses a phase-change material to capture waste heat from refrigeration systems and use it to defrost evaporators, in the process boosting efficiency, extending plant life, safeguarding food hygiene, and improving safety for store staff.

The innovation, developed by a team headed by Professor Tom Davies, beat rival entries from some of the biggest names on the UK High Street and global manufacturers to be presented with the accolade in front of an audience of several hundred industry guests.

David Walter, managing director of Frigesco, said: “We are naturally delighted to have received this award, not least because it has been conferred by the industry itself – reflecting its recognition of the huge potential of flash defrost to transform the efficiency of cooling plant.”

He added: “We are more than ever convinced that flash defrost is a world beater, and will in due course become adopted as mainstream technology throughout the refrigeration industry globally.”

The award is the latest in a string of accolades for Frigesco. It won UK Government backing, in the form of a DECC grant for low carbon technology, at the end of last year, followed by a prestigious international award at Clean Equity Monaco 2014

In addition to its latest award win, flash defrost was also Highly Commended in the Low Carbon Achievement of the Year category.

Conventional methods of defrosting require electric heaters, or “hot gas” from the system, which makes the refrigeration plant less efficient. These additional energy inputs cost stores thousands of pounds a year.

Frigesco’s system absorbs and removes waste heat from the refrigeration system in the normal course of operation, increasing its efficiency in the process by adding a sub-cooling effect, and then using this “free” energy to carry out highly efficient defrosts.

Although the main benefit is a reduction in energy use and lower plant running costs, the system delivers other attractive benefits for retailers, including:

  • Improved food hygiene and safety due to more effective defrosts, and more stable temperatures in the refrigerated space;
  • Increased working life and fewer breakdowns for refrigeration plant, due to more complete defrosts and improved equipment operation;
  • Potential reductions in equipment capital costs due to design optimisation possible with the use of flash defrost;
  • Reduction in a retail store’s overall maximum electrical draw, giving “head room” in locations where power supplies are near the limit, which may be vital in extreme weather conditions, as experienced in hot summer months;
  • The more efficient defrost process stops the build-up of frost on floors and walls in the immediate environment of refrigeration plant, eliminating slip hazards for store staff.

Frigesco is working with a number of major UK food retailers on in-store trials at locations across the country. Once proven in cold rooms, the next stage will be to apply the system to refrigerated display cases.

For more information: call David Walter on +44 (0)1392 247 943 or +44(0)7889 368 629; Email: david@frigesco.com;  Web: www.frigesco.com

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