The compressor manufacturer sees its future in hydrocarbon refrigerants and variable-speed compressors.
Embraco's Peter Bukšár
Embraco, the Brazilian compressor maker, is banking on a combination of hydrocarbon refrigerants and variable-speed compressors to maximise the energy efficiency of small commercial refrigeration equipment.
With 75% of its commercial compressors already made to accommodate the increasingly popular propane refrigerant, “we foresee producing mostly variable-speed compressors,” said Peter Bukšár, technical support senior specialist for Embraco, during a presentation at Chillventa 2016, held on 11-13 October in Nuremberg, Germany.
According to Bukšár, isobutene or propane (at a maximum charge of 150g) will alone boost the energy efficiency of a commercial self-contained refrigeration unit by 5% to 15% over traditional refrigerants, but adding a variable-speed compressor further increases the overall efficiency.
He gave several examples of this combination at work, including an ice cream freezer (more than 25% energy reduction vs. HFCs/on-off compressor unit), and a bottle cooler (an almost 50% energy drop).
“We already see possibilities for small commercial appliances.”
- Peter Bukšár, Embraco
Embraco builds variable-speed compressors for commercial equipment under the Fullmotion brand. It has developed another variable-speed line, the oil-free Wisemotion, which is currently produced for household refrigerators: though “we already see possibilities for small commercial appliances,” said Bukšár.
Variable-speed compressors are costlier than traditional compressors, but with energy savings, “it’s easy to calculate how much you are able to save on the lifetime of the application to justify the additional investment,” he said.