Carrier Transicold Moves Toward ‘Natural’ Cooling Technology

ATHENS, GA – The trailer refrigeration system manufacturer Carrier Transicold is setting its sights on natural refrigerant technology.

The move it said surpasses current alternatives in terms of reducing environmental impact while voluntarily aligning with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) latest and more stringent refrigerant change listing for other commercial, non-transport refrigeration systems.

“We are committed to expanding our proven, environmentally responsible natural refrigerant systems for road transport,” said David Appel, president, Carrier Transicold and Refrigeration Systems. “Specifically, we are building on our expertise with the natural refrigerant carbon dioxide (CO2), which has a significantly lower global warming potential (GWP) than current synthetic refrigerants and their alternates.”

Truck and trailer refrigeration units in North America use R-404A, one of a number of hydrofluorcarbon (HFC) refrigerants for which the EPA, established new restrictions in other applications, such as stationary commercial refrigeration systems.

Effective this year, European Union regulations aggressively ramp down the use of HFC refrigerants that have a high potential to increase global climate change.

As an option to the HFC R-404A for truck and trailer systems in Europe, Carrier Transicold and other transport refrigeration equipment providers now offer the refrigerant R-452A, a three-component blend that includes a hydrofluoroolefin (HFO) and has what Carrier Transicold claims is 45 percent lower potential to affect global climate change than R-404A. However, R-452A is awaiting approval by EPA for use in the United States.

If it’s approved, R452A could become an interim option for U.S. truck and trailer customers seeking more environmentally responsible refrigerants, according to Carrier Transicold.

“Carrier Transicold’s greater goal for transport refrigeration significantly surpasses the benefits of R-452A,” Appel said. “The natural refrigerant CO2 is cost-effective, readily available worldwide and has a GWP of only one, which is roughly 2,000 times better than R 452A and 4,000 times better than R-404A.”

Carrier says it has successfully applied CO2 refrigerant in both stationary commercial refrigeration and marine transport applications. Since its introduction in 2004, more than 1,600 supermarkets across Europe have adopted Carrier’s CO2OLtec commercial refrigeration system, which uses CO2 refrigerant.

In 2013, Carrier Transicold commercially launched the NaturaLINE unit, the world’s first marine container refrigeration system using CO2 refrigerant, which can lower carbon emissions by 28 percent, compared to previous systems.

To help facilitate greater adoption of CO2 as a refrigerant in the United States, Carrier said it successfully petitioned the EPA to approve the low global warming refrigerant for transport refrigeration. The agency now lists CO2 as ‘acceptable’ for new transport refrigeration applications.

“With its GWP of one, CO2 is the basis for calculating the GWP of all other refrigerants,” said Appel. “It serves as the benchmark for environmental sustainability, which is what Carrier Transicold continues to relentlessly pursue.”

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