The Industrial Refrigeration Consortium's Fourth Annual Research and Technology Forum offered conference sessions with practical information. IRC, based in Madison, Wis., pulled the following highlights and ran them in The Cold Front, its quarterly newsletter.
Emerging Technologies: Variable-Speed Drives. The IRC's Todd Jekel's economic analysis of a typical cooler and freezer application showed that variable-speed drives, also called variable-frequency drives (VFDs), installed on evaporator fans provide payback in fewer than three years in a system with the fans running continuously. For a system cycling the fans, savings are diminished somewhat, but payback still is fewer than four years. Jekel reported that varying compressor suction pressure in response to load variations provided energy savings. However, the savings may be not large enough to justify the additional controls that would be required for implementation. For a complete copy of this presentation, go to www.irc.wisc.edu/activities/rtforum.php.