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USA:  Following the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) announcement last year relating to the proposed delisting of certain hydroflourocarbons (HFCs) commonly used as refrigerants in refrigeration and air conditioning applications, from its Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) as early as Janurary 1, 2016. The EPA yesterday announced in a pre-publication final ruling that refrigerants R404A and R507A will now effectively be banned from use in new supermarket systems from January 1, 2017 and in retrofits from July 1, next year.

The EPA's announcement comes following pressure from various industry stakeholders to allow manufacturers the time and flexibility they need to ensure a smooth transition to safer alternatives.

In addition, standalone Medium Temperature and Low Temperature standalone units will not be allowed to use the high-GWP refrigerants along with medium-GWP refrigerants such as R134a, R407A and R407F in new equipment from 2019 or 2020 depending on size.

Interesting to see that these medium-GWP HFCs, particularly R407F, commonly used as the preferred alternative to R404A in the UK are being targeted. Maybe we can expect another F-Gas Regulation amendment in the not to distant future. Watch this Space!

Related links: 

EPA Official Annoucement

EPA Finalizes Rule to Reduce Climate-Damaging HFCs

 

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USA:  With Carbon dioxide (CO2/R744) continuing to gain momentum and fast becoming the refrigerant of choice among supermarkets, and the long-term replacement for HFCs for the foreseeable future. Emerson Climate Technologies, Inc., has announced it will be hosting a webinar to explore the many operating implications of CO2-based refrigeration systems from a service technician's perspective. The aim of the webinar is to help technicians to be effectively prepared when dealing with the refrigerant's unique properties.

The free webinar, entitled “Seven Keys to Servicing CO2 Systems,” will be held from 7-8 p.m. GMT (2–3 p.m. EDT) on Tuesday, July 14, and cover the following topics:

  • Dealing with the high pressure of R744
  • How to improve CO2 system efficiencies in warm ambient environments
  • Understanding R744’s critical and triple points
  • Managing power outages
  • Dealing with the standstill pressures of R744
  • Preparing service technicians with the proper equipment (gauges, hoses, etc.)
  • R744 cylinder storage, charging and maintenance best practices

The webinar will be presented by Andre Patenaude, director, CO2 business development of Emerson Climate Technologies. Andre is responsible for developing the global strategy around the company’s CO2 industry stewardship, marketing initiatives, communication/messaging activities, channel training and educational programs as they relate to utilizing CO2 in refrigeration systems. Andre has also published a series of extremely informative blogs on CO2 as a refrigerant on Emerson’s Climate Conversations.

You can register for the free webinar here

 

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UK:  Clean cold technology company, Dearman, has announced that full testing of its cutting-edge zero-emission engine technology has begun at its new liquid air R&D facility.

The Dearman Technology Centre, located near Croydon, Surrey, is the first dedicated liquid air engine facility of its kind. It houses a range of custom-built test cells, in which Dearman’s ground-breaking technologies will undergo extended durability testing and new applications will be developed.

The Dearman Technology Centre will become a hub of liquid air engine design, engineering, test and development. When fully operational it will enable the testing of four engines simultaneously, along with full system testing, supported by low-volume manufacturing and build capabilities.

Commenting on the new facility, Dearman’s Deputy Chief Executive, Michael Ayres, said: “The Dearman Technology Centre is a huge step forward for the company, and for the development of cutting-edge clean cold technologies. Having a bespoke facility means that we can accelerate our rate of development and testing, enabling us to bring zero- emission cold and power technologies to market even quicker.

“The team is hard at work running durability testing on the Dearman engine powered zero-emission transport refrigeration unit. The technology is performing well – its power output is very good and it is still proving to be highly efficient.”

Regarding other applications of the Dearman engine, he added: “With four test cells and a dedicated workshop, we are able to work on several projects in parallel. We have been at the Dearman Technology Centre for only a few short weeks, but already we are placed to commence work work on the high-efficiency auxiliary power unit for use on buses and heavy-duty vehicles next week.”

Dearman’s zero-emission transport refrigeration system is currently in extended on- vehicle testing at MIRA, and will be commencing commercial on-road trials later this year.

The company has recently been awarded funding from Innovate UK to develop its auxiliary power unit, and work on customising the transport refrigeration system for different vehicle types - activity that will be focused in the new Dearman Technology Centre. 

Related Articles:

 

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UK:  An innovative mentoring scheme is being launched for the Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heat-pump industry. The ‘Sustain-Ability’ project will be a pioneering new mentoring scheme with an initial pilot programme being launched in July, prior to full launch in September.  Focused on the RACHP industry, Sustain-Ability will offer a unique opportunity for knowledge exchange between industry professionals at different stages in their careers. The scheme will connect motivated industry professionals as mentors with equally motivated mentees from across the RACHP sector through an online platform.

Sustain-Ability is enlisting a network of experienced industry professionals to act as accredited mentors. The mentoring relationship offers opportunities for reciprocal growth and learning.

There is a lot of industry focus at present at attracting new young talent into the industry. The Sustain-ability mentoring scheme will work in concert with other initiatives. A successful industry-wide mentoring programme is integral to the drive to close the skills gap and raise industry standards.

Sustain-Ability founder Steve Gill explains “Mentoring matters. Ask any successful senior person in this industry and they quickly acknowledge that there have been key mentors in their past that have contributed to the success of their career. One problem that the industry is now facing is that as companies have restructured, and as demands upon individual’s time have become greater, as an industry generally, we have less time to do our jobs let alone support those that are coming through.”

One of the major demands on professional’s time is modern communications; full inboxes, sms messages, to say nothing of mobile phones while improving speed of communication has but a strain upon our time to support others on the one hand, but on the other hand, if harnessed correctly provide tools and opportunities that were simply not available to us in the past. Using an eMentoring approach, it is possible for someone in Aberdeen to mentor a mentee in Exeter, or even Sydney Australia for that matter.

The Sustain-Ability Mentoring scheme provides the ultimate opportunity for this industry to sustain and further develop the skills through knowledge transfer.

Steve Gill concluded “as an industry, our legacy is what we leave behind.  As individuals, our legacy is the people working in this industry long after we have left it. Mentoring is a rich source of self-learning and personal growth. It offers us a tangible difference to the success of others. This might be to help increase their confidence or ability, or support their technical and career success.  The RACHP industry is made up of people. When our enjoyment comes from the difference we make to other people, mentoring becomes a true lasting legacy definition of the term ‘win-win’.”

For further details, or if you would like to take part as either a mentor or mentee in the pilot programme, please contact Steve Gill via email: steve@stephengill.eu.  Details of the Sustain-Ability platform will be provided in the next couple of weeks.

 

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CHINA:  UK-based Stephen Gill Associates, have been presented with two Gold and two Silver Stevie Awards at the Asia-Pacific gala banquet at the InterContinental Hotel in Shanghai China on 5 June.

The awards continue the internationally acclaim for poster campaign 'extolling the too often overlooked virtues and benefits of refrigeration and cooling technology' and are now in the process of being translated into other languages. 

The campaign which is the brainchild of refrigeration consultant Steve Gill, ran on LinkedIn last year generating a huge amount of interest from around the world receiving over half a million views, over 2,000 comments, and close to 10,000 ‘likes’.

Steve Gill who attended the Gala Dinner in Shanghai to collect the Awards said “This is an amazing result.  For the ACR industry to be noticed and appreciated at this level is astonishing.  The campaign was a global success on LinkedIn with Australia in particular being one of the first countries to show appreciation for it, but to come away with 2 Gold Awards is something beyond my expectations.”

Stephen Gill Associates won in Golds Stevie Awards in the Communications/PR - Campaign: Low Budget, and the Small-Budget Marketing Campaign of the Year categories, as well as Silver Stevie Awards in the Communications/PR - Campaign: Marketing - Social Media Focused, and the Online Marketing Campaign of the Year categories.

The Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards are the only business awards program to recognize achievement in the workplace in all 22 nations of the Asia-Pacific region.  The Stevie Awards are widely considered to be the world's premier business awards, conferring recognition for achievement in programs such as The International Business Awards for more than a decade.

Gold, Silver and Bronze Stevie Award winners were selected by more than 60 executives around the world who participated in first-round judging in March and April.

Related Articles: 

 

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RAC Cooling Award Finalist 2015UK:  Clean cold technology company Dearman, has been shortlisted as a finalist in this year's RAC Cooling Industry Awards for their transport refrigeration system.

The Dearman zero-emission transport refrigeration system, currently undergoing trials at UK engineering and test centre MIRA, is based on the Dearman engine, which is powered by the expansion of liquid nitrogen to deliver highly efficient and cost-effective power and cooling. 

Toby Peters, Senior Group Managing Director, Dearman

Michael Ayres, Group Managing Director, Dearman said: "Being shortlisted as a 'Refrigeration Innovation' finalist in the respected RAC Cooling Industry Awards is a great achievement for Dearman.

“We are bringing our economically viable, environmental technologies to market in a compressed timescale, and this recognition for Dearman's innovative zero-emission transport refrigeration system is testament to the hard work of everyone in the company"

Currently, most transport refrigeration units are powered by fossil fuels. As these small auxiliary engines are poorly regulated, they are disproportionately polluting, contributing to poor air quality. The Dearman system is zero-emission at the point of use, eliminating NOx (nitrogen oxides), CO2 and particulate matter from the refrigeration process. As well as delivering significant environmental benefit, it is economically viable and presents a strong business case by saving operators money.

Dearman’s zero-emission system is currently undergoing on-vehicle testing and results are encouraging, with the technology performing well. Later this year, the system will be in on-road trials, with extended commercial trials commencing in 2016.

The RAC Cooling Industry Awards champion the leading innovations and environmental successes in the refrigeration and air conditioning industry. This announcement follows shortly after Dearman being shortlisted for two categories in the Business Green Leaders Awards, the results of which will be announced next month.

Related Articles:

 

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UK:  “There is considerable confusion in the industry, regarding the energy efficiency, temperature accuracy and performance of foodservice and food retailing refrigeration equipment. This uncertainty has been exacerbated by the introduction to the marketplace of copycat refrigerated drawer systems. These products purport to share the characteristics of Adande’s patented design, but none of them deliver the same unique insulated container ‘hold the cold’ technology.”

These are the challenging words of Adande’s Sales Director, Karl Hodgson, who believes that many refrigeration equipment manufacturers are selling their customers short when it comes to energy efficiency and performance claims. He cites product design, including runners mounted on the outside of drawers to eliminate the impact of moisture and freezing and high integrity robust horizontal seals as features that set the Adande apart from other refrigeration equipment. He also highlights the internal location of the condenser unit, which improves efficiency and reduces duty on the compressor, as a major benefit of the Adande design.

In an attempt to set the record straight, Adande commissioned an independent third party to compare the performance of its VCS1 single drawer model against a similar model from another manufacturer (model A). Adande also conducted in house tests, under climate class 4 conditions, comparing its VCS1 model with a major manufacturer’s refrigerated drawer system (model B). All products used in the trials, were brand new, ex factory models.

Trials with the fridges in chiller mode confirmed Adande used:

  • 55% less energy per year than model A
  • 73% less energy per year than model B.

In freezer mode, the Adande used:

  • 46% less energy per year than model A
  • 63% less energy per year than model B.

It was also noted that the Adande offered additional energy savings of 19% with the hydrocarbon refrigerant option, which is available at no extra cost.

In terms of stable and accurate holding temperatures, in chilled mode the warmest temperature measured in the Adande was 2.5C above set point, whilst the warmest temperatures for models A and B were 11.8C and 7C above set point, respectively. When operating as freezers, the warmest temperature measured in the Adande was 4.9C above set point, whilst the warmest temperatures were 14.7C and 8C above set point for models A and B, respectively.

All three models under test had a similar footprint, but the Adande scored well in terms of storage volume, with:

  • 11.8% more storage volume than model A
  • 46.5% more storage volume than model B.

Adande had previously undertaken trials, at Westminster Kingsway College, comparing an Adande refrigerated drawer unit with a conventional under counter door fridge in the storage of fresh fish, including haddock, salmon and prawns. The tests concluded that the Adande significantly outperformed its competitor in terms of prolonging the quality and appearance of the fish. The trials also established that the average weight loss, due to dehydration, of fish stored in the conventional fridge was 3.5 times higher than product held in the Adande. Taking into account the reduced yield from shrinkage and the wastage of inedible product, the monetary value of fish stored in the conventional fridge had been reduced by 33.6% at the end of the trial. By comparison, the reduction in monetary value of the fish stored in the Adande was just 1.5%.

A copy of Adande’s ‘Imitated, but never equalled’ literature, detailing comparisons with other fridge models, is available on request, as is the report on the Westminster Kingsway College fresh fish trials.

For a copy email sales@adande.com

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UK:  Surrey-based Longcross Construction has gone into administration this week putting nearly 140 jobs at risk, and work on sites suspended in a move that could have major financial ramifications for some of the UK's leading refrigeration contractors and suppliers.

Administrators from Deloitte were called in following the company’s ongoing financial difficulties reported to be due to the downturn of store expansion plans by some of the major supermarkets, which has been the company’s main focus now for over a decade.

In addition it’s reported that the directors of Longcross have also filed a Notice of Intention to appoint administrators to Longcross Group Limited.

Staff at Longcross Construction claim they were “left in the dark” about the company’s financial troubles, with one employee reportedly telling Construction Enquirer that  “For the last few months we’ve had subcontractors constantly on and off site due to outstanding payments, then three weeks ago the site came to a standstill.

“We were being told by subcontractors that the company was going under way before we heard anything from the Longcross management.”

The Enquirer further reports that it had also been contacted by a number of subcontractors hit by the firm’s failure with one reportedly saying, “We decided to stop working for them last December after completing a job in London which was a complete shambles.”

According to the company’s 2013/14 financial results for the 12 months to 31 March 2014, Longcross posted a £1.2m loss on a turnover of £231.2m, which the company put down to “one single project” in its construction division.

LXE South Ltd, LXE North Ltd and Longcross Fire and Security Ltd are said to be unaffected and is understood that they are all trading normally under the control of their directors.

 

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NEW YORK:  Toby Peters, Chief Executive of Dearman – the clean cold technology company – will be speaking at REFF-Wall Street in New York on June 24.

Peters will highlight the critical role that cold plays in national and international energy systems, the growing environmental impact of cooling and the potential for cold technologies to become a major growth market within the renewables sector. 

He will call for a joined-up, systems-level approach to the development of ‘clean cold’ infrastructure, with governments, investors and technology companies working together to enable the formation of a ‘cold economy’ worth billions of dollars and capable of supporting thousands of jobs.

The U.S. has a major, established demand for cooling. It expends approximately 185 billion kilowatt hours of energy annually just to provide residential cooling; 48 per cent of domestic energy consumption in the US is used to provide either heating or cooling; and the U.S. is the world’s largest market for transport refrigeration units, with approximately 480,000 refrigerated vehicles on the road.

Research by Dearman has also drawn attention to future growth of cooling demand, which is being driven by fast growing economies such as China and India. For example, based on estimated demand, the number of transport refrigeration units on the world’s roads could reach 17 million by 2025, up from fewer than 3 million in operation today.

However, despite this existing and rapidly growing demand for cold and the impact cooling has on the global energy system, thermal technology remains the Cinderella of the renewable energy market, with investment lagging behind electricity generation. In the UK, between 2010 and 2013 an estimated £27.7bn was invested in renewable electricity generation, compared to £1.7bn in thermal technologies. 

Peters will highlight the relative underinvestment into thermal technologies and the opportunity to establish new high-growth markets for clean cold technology if that were to change.

Toby Peters, Senior Group Managing Director, Dearman

Discussing Dearman’s presence at REFF-Wall Street, Toby Peters said: “America is the largest economy on Earth and much of its prosperity is underpinned by cold. Whether in transporting food, distributing medicines or enabling people to live comfortably in places like Las Vegas, people need cooling – lots of it. But providing that cold is energy intensive and all too often inefficient, fossil fuelled and polluting. That has to change, and this is the point I will be making at REFF-Wall Street.

“Emerging clean cold technologies such as Dearman’s liquid air systems have the potential to make an immediate impact here in the United States. They can quickly improve air quality, reduce carbon intensity and save operators money. However, to maximise the long-term benefit governments, investors and technology companies need to think about the role that cold plays in the overall energy mix and how new clean cold technologies can be integrated to establish substantial new markets. If that happens, the overall prize of developing a whole new market for clean cold technology could be very significant.”

He added: “Dearman has exciting prospects for future growth, and the United States is a key long-term market for us. REFF-Wall Street is a crucible of innovative American thinking and I am very proud to be flying the flag for the UK cleantech industry and the growing British cold economy.”

REFF-Wall Street is the premier renewable energy financing event in the U.S., and attracts senior representatives from the renewables, cleantech and finance industries. The event is hosted by ACORE (American Council on Renewable Energy) and Euromoney Energy Events.

This event will follow closely after a Dearman-hosted event, which takes place during the European Union Sustainable Energy Week on June 18. Dearman is leading a workshop, Cleaner Cooling: Sustainably meeting the rapid growth in transport and urban cooling demand. The workshop will explore how industry and policy makers can sustainably meet the rapid growth in transport and urban cooling demand.

Related Articles:

America's Leading Renewable Energy Financing Event Returns to New York June 24 - 25, 2015

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UK:  The first UK installation of Toshiba’s new high efficiency Digital Inverter 4 range of air conditioning units has been carried out by Metainy Air Conditioning Ltd.

The long-standing Toshiba accredited installer has installed the new heat pump-based system at its headquarters at Woodlands Business Park, Maidenhead, as part of an upgrade of the existing system serving the company’s project design and administration offices.

The installation uses a ducted split system based on two 2.5kW Toshiba DI 4 high performance units, supplying cooled and heated air through the ceiling void to outlet grilles above the main working area.

The new units are an important addition to Toshiba’s range, which now spans from 1hp (2.5kW) through to 10hp (25kW) within the Digital Inverter range and offers models across the spectrum in this popular sector of the market.

Offering exceptional efficiency and fully compliant with the ErP Directive (Lot10) threshold for 2015, they have a sector-leading operating range, delivering cooling from -15 up to 46deg C and able to provide heating in ambient conditions as low as -15deg C, eclipsing industry rivals by a significant margin.

The most efficient combinations can deliver a SEER number as high as 6.1 and are rated at A++ for energy performance. Efficiency is helped by the use of Toshiba’s power-save function, which enables the user to set the degree of performance covered, between 50 and 100per cent, in one per cent increments.

New Toshiba Digital Inverter outdoor air conditioning unitToshiba air conditioning digital inverter save function

The new models allow small capacity systems to be fully integrated with VRF systems and BMS controls via an interface (not required on wall mounted systems), and are compatible will the range of light commercial and commercial control options.

Compatibility with BMS controls was one of the key reasons Metainy opted for the new Toshiba Digital Inverter (DI) units.

Metainy Director, Mac Baker, said: “The new DI systems are designed to dovetail with the BMS we already have installed on site, which makes it easy to set them up and quickly integrate with the rest of the system.”

He added: “They are also excellent for maintaining comfort conditions due to the fine control, and a real step forward in this sector of the market.”

Metainy is one of Toshiba’s longest serving Accredited Installers, with some 30 years’ experience of applying and servicing Toshiba equipment.

Mac Baker said: “Toshiba products are reliable and superbly engineered, which means a lot when one call-back can wipe-out the profit on a project. The back-up and technical support is also first-class - we can count on Toshiba to give us the information and support when we need it. Overall, it’s a great product, supported by a great team.”

The company recently won two projects with a national high street chemist, which has specified the new Toshiba DI air conditioning equipment for use in its stores.

 

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