Thermo King connects van fridges with TracKing

Thermo King now connects its direct drive, vehicle-powered truck and van fridges through TracKing

Brussels, UK: Thermo King now connects its direct drive, vehicle-powered truck and van fridges through its TracKing system.

All new and existing units can to the telematics system that allows monitoring and analysis of refrigerated operations.

“Our remote connectivity, mobile apps, and data gathering allows fleet managers to transform their operations and make their fleets more predictable and traceable,” said Eneko Fernandez, product management leader at Thermo King.

“Our customers value intelligent products and services and we are pleased to continue to offer them with the innovative solutions that will help them improve fleet optimization and increase profitability.”

Part of the TracKing telematics system, the TK BlueBox communication device collects and stores unit data, which can be accessed through a free Thermo King Reefer mobile app on a smartphone or Bluetooth-enabled device.This allows fleet managers and drivers to remotely access vital unit data to ensure that the load is protected at all times and the unit is running at its most efficient. Drivers can monitor cargo temperatures and the reefer even when they are away from the vehicle during deliveries or on a break.

Thermo King’s temperature management system, TracKing can be integrated into other transport management systems to optimize asset utilization and enable seamless data integration. With support from the Thermo King dealer network, fleets benefit from proactive and efficient service across Europe while minimizing downtime. Access to real-time data and diagnostics also enables Thermo King dealers to serve as trusted solution advisors that are even better equipped to anticipate and respond to customers’ evolving needs.

Star Refrigeration CO2 packages for smaller applications

Star Refrigeration’s industrial CO2 refrigeration systems for smaller scale industrial applications

Glasgow, UK: Star Refrigeration has a new range of industrial CO2 refrigeration systems for smaller scale industrial applications for temperature-controlled storage and distribution, food and drink manufacturing and inline freezing and chilling.

Up until now, those seeking refrigeration solutions in an industrial setting but with a capacity of under 300kW faced something of a conundrum. The F-gas regulation is moving end-users away from HFCs through the imposition of stringent restrictions in the production of high global warming potential refrigerants and sharp price hikes.

At the same time, the use of industrial ammonia systems is unsuitable in certain applications due to its capital costs and toxicity potential when used in enclosed environments.  As a result, customers have been forced into adopting commercial, line-assembled CO2 packs, geared towards non industrial applications or HFCs which are subject to phasedown.

David Wallace, director of sales, Star Refrigeration said, “From the initial development phase we strived to respond to market demand by developing a competitive solution which allowed customers with smaller industrial applications to move away from HFCs and use natural refrigerants, without compromising quality or life span.”

“With over 40MW of project install capacity, Star Refrigeration leveraged their wide experience in delivering bespoke CO2 refrigeration solutions for industrial applications to engineer the new generation of industrial build, self-contained CO2 refrigeration packages.”

The low temperature Envichill, Envicold, Envifreeze and Envichiller are efficient and long term solutions for industrial applications with capacities up to 300kW. The Envichill, Envicold and Envichiller solutions feature single-stage transcritical CO2 packs, multiple semi-hermetic reciprocating compressors and Star Refrigeration’s patented low-pressure receiver, delivering enhanced efficiency via semi-flooded evaporator operation. Meanwhile, the Envifreeze features a two-stage compression booster system for lower temperatures and enhanced performance.

The Envi range is designed around Star’s low-pressure receiver technology, which means that minimal refrigerant charge and no refrigerant pumps are required in its operation, and follows on from a variety of CO2 projects completed in 2017 for two of the largest bakeries in the United Kingdom and a local pizza manufacturer. All members of the Envi family are ideal alternatives to existing ammonia refrigeration systems and synthetic HFC refrigerants.

All units come with welded steel pack pipework and base frames and are designed for hassle-free installation, while the accessible component layout of the machines and the dual pressure-relief valves make maintenance as straight forward as possible.

The new Envi range combines high quality, industrial components with innovative developments in the technology and a thorough understanding of the industry to deliver a tailor made, sustainable refrigeration solution for smaller-scale industrial applications.

Where to next for batteries and electric trucks

Cambridge, UK: Batteries and trucks go after the e-bus success story reports IDTechEx Research

Volvo Trucks has unveiled its first all-electric truck for commercial use – the Volvo FL Electric. This piece of news is but the first in a series of announcements that started in November 2017 with the Tesla Semi, and has since seen other industry players like Daimler, Cummins, and emerging companies like Nikola present the advantages of converting the trucking industry from diesel engines to electric powertrains.

By looking at GHG emissions figures, it is immediately clear why the trucking industry can play a pivotal role in their reduction: together with buses, it accounts for about 37% of CO2 emissions in the European Union, despite making up a much smaller proportion of the total road vehicle population.


Trucks on the road are often 10+ years old, which means that most of those we see on the road do not comply with the newest emissions regulations yet. Even environmentally aware countries like Germany still have a negligible proportion of electric trucks and vans on its roads, while other places like Italy have a sizeable proportion of delivery vans powered by natural gas, which is less pollutant than diesel, but still a source of GHG.

Nevertheless, companies like Volvo are pushing the boundaries in this respect. The president of Volvo Trucks Claes Nilsson says: “We’re immensely proud to present the first in a range of fully electrically-powered Volvo trucks ready for regular traffic. With this model we are making it possible for cities that aim for sustainable urban development to benefit from the advantages of electrified truck transports”.

The company is planning to introduce an electric truck with a gross vehicle weight (GVW) of 16 tonnes, powered by 100-300 kWh Li-ion batteries and capable of delivering 185 kW peak power. Fast DC charging will enable a full charge in under 2 hours. While these numbers clearly tell us that Volvo’s trucks are not yet ready for long haulage, it does show interest from a European OEM in being the change agent for the goods delivery industry.

China, which controls more than 90% of the world’s electric bus market, on the other hand, has not been able to replicate the e-bus success with larger vehicles like trucks. The diagram above shows how, unlike buses, trucks are still diesel-powered for the most part. In China’s case, high-end trucks are still dominated by European manufacturers, while cheaper trucks are normally manufactured by local companies.

In an industry with wafer-thin margins, fuel efficiency and reduced maintenance could prove to be winning factors in the renewal of an often overlooked industry. Another factor to keep track of is related to driver shortage. In many advanced economies, the truck driver cohort is shrinking, due to long working hours and other socio-economical aspects.

While electric trucks alone will not solve that issue, the integration of ADAS features like platooning and self-driving can aid the transportation industry in the continued delivery of goods across the world’s highways. The mining industry has already started adopting ADAS features to address its logistics bottlenecks.

Find out more in the IDTechEx Research report Electric Vehicles and Autonomous Vehicles in Mining 2018-2028.

In June IDTechEx will be discussing all of the above in a series of masterclasses.

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