USA: Leading retail refrigeration equipment manufacturer Hillphoenix is to work with Axiom Exergy to provide energy efficient thermal storage systems to US supermarkets.

The collaboration follows the success of a trial of Axiom’s Refrigeration Battery at a Whole Foods Market in California.

“Axiom Exergy offers an interesting solution for facilities with large refrigeration systems to reduce their operating costs, as well as improve their resilience during power outages,” commented Hillphoenix’s senior vice president product strategy and innovation Eduardo Navarro. 

The Refrigeration Battery is a thermal storage solution designed to decrease energy costs for supermarkets and increase store resilience during power outages. 

Using the store’s existing refrigeration system, the Refrigeration Battery stores “cooling”” at night by freezing tanks of salt water when energy costs are low. Then, when electricity prices peak during the afternoon, the Refrigeration Battery “discharges” like any other battery to provide uninterrupted cooling services. 

“Axiom’s development of its Refrigeration Battery technology shares the innovative spirit that guides Hillphoenix,” said Eduardo Navarro. “We are excited by the opportunity to work with Axiom in offering high reliability/low operating cost refrigeration solutions to customers.”

Axiom offers the Refrigeration Battery to its customers via a savings-as-a-service model, requiring no upfront capital or out of pocket expense for the life of the project. In the US it is considered an energy service and off-balance sheet, enabling supermarket owners to reserve precious capital for revenue-generating investments. The technology has an estimated lifespan of 25 years.

As well as helping to develop and market storage-enabled refrigeration platforms, Hillphoenix will also support engineering, construction, and ongoing operations and maintenance of the product.

“We’ve been impressed with Hillphoenix’s track record of consistently advancing the state-of-the-art in the refrigeration industry in the past decades,” says Amrit Robbins, president and co-founder of Axiom Exergy. “As we scale up to the over 60,000 addressable retail, cold storage, distribution, and manufacturing sites in the US alone, it’s imperative to find key partners that have the combination of a vast industry footprint and also are actively seeking groundbreaking solutions being developed by early-stage technology companies like Axiom.”

The AMS Group within Hillphoenix offers turnkey services for energy efficiency upgrades and retrofits designed to improve the shopper’s experience and the supermarket’s bottom line. Going forward, Hillphoenix says that Axiom’s Refrigeration Battery will be an additional service that the AMS Group can provide to help customers reduce costs and increase resiliency.

Beyond its installation with Whole Foods Market, Axiom Exergy has an installation underway at a Walmart in San Diego, as well as a $5m rollout contract with Con Edison.

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