Star Refrigeration’s Leeds branch has replaced an unused cold store plant, allowing the owner to lease it to a third party.
The Ice Co Storage and Logistics site, in Newark, had originally belonged to the ice manufacturing branch of the business but, due to expansion at other sites and a streamlining of production, had become unused. Looking to lease the plant to a third party for refrigeration, storage and distribution purposes, the company invited Star to assess the costs of making it operational again.
Star found that the plant would require not only a controls upgrade and a condenser replacement, but also a refrigerant conversion to allow for the operation of the plant in the medium term. These costs would have amounted to roughly the same as replacing the existing common plant with all new facilities and it was agreed that comprehensive replacement represented the best option.
The new plant took the form of two DX R449A condensing unit plants, both of which serve a single ceiling-mounted evaporator within the cold store. Both units operate at 36kW, which represents 65% of the maximum design duty, affording a solution which combines performance with resiliency.
Star took advantage of an existing concrete plinth at ground level directly behind the internal evaporators to install the condensing units, while two networks of interconnecting pipework were run up the outside of the building to reach the roof void above the evaporators. This achieved a practical solution which minimised installation time, expense and effort.
Star also prioritised energy-efficiency in this project. By incorporating the same electronic expansion valves, EC condenser fans (known to reduce energy consumption by up to 20% on their own) and a skip-defrost function, Star was able to guarantee optimal energy consumption.
The Ice Co Storage and Logistics is one of many businesses to benefit from Star’s award-winning refrigeration energy management system, Ethos, which won Refrigeration Product of the Year at the 2018 National ACR & Heat Pump Awards.
For the same price as a basic refurbishment and upgrade of the original R404A plant, the client obtained a complete replacement of the cold store, which now meets all current regulations, enjoys increased energy-efficiency and represents an additional avenue of revenue through a third-party lease. The project also included a comprehensive maintenance contract for the first 12 months of the plant’s operatione.