Project Description

HFC phase down is coming – Do you have a plan?

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New World Devonport

EcoChill has designed and built the first transcritical carbon dioxide refrigeration system in New Zealand, installing it in the New World Devonport supermarket in Auckland. Equipped with Arneg product, an international leader in retail refrigeration equipment, and using control and monitoring systems by Resource Data Management (RDM), the store is designed to ensure the smooth running of the plant and to optimise energy use across the store’s advanced integrated cooling and heating system.

The Challenge

The New Zealand government is introducing tough controls on the use of synthetic HFC refrigerants. This takes the form of a levy on sales of refrigerants with a high Global Warming Potential (GWP) under the country’s Emission Trading Scheme. Cooling technologies based on high GWP HFC refrigerants will be subject to sharp rises in costs, with users facing significant additional expense in the event of a major leak. As a result, end users are searching for safe and efficient alternatives in order to reduce potential emissions and future-proof their businesses.New World Devonport is owned and operated by John Ashton, a businessman with an enlightened view of environmental issues and a willingness to explore innovative solutions. As part of a planned refurbishment of the 26-year-old supermarket, Mr Ashton was seeking to replace the existing refrigeration system and cabinets throughout the store. The challenge was to design a safe, efficient and reliable system that was not reliant on HFC refrigerants. John Ashton worked closely with EcoChill on a fresh approach to meet these requirements.

The Solution

The solution, designed, built and installed by EcoChill using Arneg product, is based on a transcritical CO2 refrigeration pack with a linked heat recovery system. This harnesses waste heat from the high temperature condensing side of the refrigeration system to generate hot water for use in store heating and the domestic water supply.At the heart of the system are two newly designed and constructed CO2 packs: a booster system provides cooling to the Low Temperature (LT) and some Medium Temperature (MT) equipment, with the remainder of the MT load being cooled by the second CO2 pack. The heat recovery circuit draws energy from both packs to heat the retail area of the store, as well as providing hot water to meet the store’s entire hot water requirements. The air conditioning system, also upgraded as part of project, has been integrated into the store’s refrigeration and heating system, to create “a single store energy system”.The installer removed the standard control system supplied with the packaged air conditioning unit, replacing it with an RDM PR0600 TDB unit, in order to provide a “helicopter view” of the entire mechanical and refrigeration system in operation. Matthew Darby, managing director of EcoChill says  “The key to delivering an energy efficiency solution is, first, to ensure effective control of the transcritical refrigeration system; then, second, to fully integrate this with the heat recovery, heating and air conditioning systems – to manage it as one seamless, integrated system.” RDM plant was chosen to deliver this, controlling and managing all aspects of the system’s operation.The RDM system manages and optimises energy use across the store for:REFRIGERATION • HEAT RECOVERY • AIR CONDITIONING • STORE HEATING • ENERGY OPTIMISATION • HOT WATERThe RDM system brings together full oversight of all these, maximising use of free heating in winter and initiating and controlling recirculation of cool air for free cooling in summer.“We harnessed the ability of the RDM system to enable suction and gas cooler pressures to float, resulting in a reduction in system compression ratios, thereby optimising performance,” says Mr Darby. “We are also using RDM systems to monitor store conditions, including temperature and humidity, to ensure we provide the ideal climate for overall efficiency and performance of the store.”

The Benefits

Mr Darby says: “The store is very energy efficient. Although the total amount of refrigeration in the supermarket has been increased, the power
required to run the system has been reduced. In addition, the new system provides the store with free hot water and free store heating in winter.”

 I am delighted with the new plant and the benefits in terms of improved control and monitoring. The previous system was proving costly to maintain
and operate. As a result of a forward thinking approach, we have been able to modernise and increase use of refrigeration at the same time, while reducing energy use – and benefiting from free heating. It is a win-win for the store, our customers and the environment.”

John Ashton, Store Owner, New World

Project Details


March 14th, 2016


New World Devonport




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