Honeywell’s new refrigerant cut supermarket energy costs

Brussels, Belgium: A long-term test running from September 2010 at UK supermarket chain Asda found a new refrigerant for supermarket chillers saved energy and reduced overall carbon footprint compared to other commonly used refrigerant blends, such as R404A or R407A.

UK supermarket chain Asda trialled Honeywell’s Genetron PerformaxTM LT refrigerant at its Hunts Cross store.  “The results of the Hunts Cross trial demonstrated that Genetron Performax LT outperforms other commonly used blends in energy efficiency and carbon footprint reduction,” said Paul Sanders, managing director for Honeywell Fluorine Products in Europe, Middle East, Africa and India.

The Asda test confirms results obtained by other European supermarkets – systems with Genetron Performax LT, also known as R-407F, consumed up to 13% less energy than systems using R-407A and up to 20% less than systems running R-404A in medium temperature.

“The benefits we are seeing are very much a combination of Asda system optimisation and favourable properties of the refrigerant. I feel the most important aspect of this conversion to Genetron Performax LT will be its unparalleled efficiency and lower GWP versus R404A, which will enable us to reduce both direct and indirect emissions,” said Brian Churchyard, head of refrigeration at Asda.

Genetron Performax LT consists of a mixture of conventional hydro fluorocarbons (R-32, R-125 and R-134a). It can be used for new commercial installations and also to retrofit existing R-404A, R-407A and R-22 installations.

Conversion of existing R-404A installations requires only minor adjustment to the expansion valve. Conversion of existing R-22 installation requires only a single oil change, and no adjustment to the expansion valve. The conversion can be done very quickly without disruption to business.

At Asda the conversion was done over the weekend. The start-up was trouble-free. The retrofitting cost is paid off through energy savings, Honeywell said in a statement.

In safety terms, there are no differences compared to conventional hydro fluorocarbons, or HFC, refrigerants, it said.

Asda has made a public commitment through its sustainability strategy to reduce the environmental impact of its own operations and those of its supply chain.

The strategy’s goals for 2015, compared to 2005 levels, include reducing energy consumption in existing stores by 35%; reducing new store carbon emissions by 60%; reducing overall carbon footprint by 10%; removing 20m tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions from its global supply chain; reducing 60% of emissions from its transport fleet.

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