The project focused on upgrading the existing fans and condensers to EBM-Papst’s EC condenser-fans and AxiTop diffusers. The new technology has been estimated to improve the energy performance of the refrigeration systems in the stores, saving just over £500,000.
The upgrade project was carried out in 152 large high street stores and Simply Food stores. Initial trials were carried out in one of Marks and Spencer’s stores in Rotherham to prove the technology.
Despite the logistical challenge of delivering and installing 1,400 new EC fans and collecting old AC fans across the UK and Ireland, the project only took three months to complete last year. In total, the time spent on the project was only 4,150 hours.
In addition to the upgrade, AB Group changed the controls for the fridge plant to enable a variable 10V output to operate the new EC fans where necessary.
Following the upgrade, there is estimated to be an annual energy reduction of 3,265.3kWh across the 152 stores which is an estimated cost saving per fan of £375.51. This represents an annual saving of £527,223 with payback in less than five years.
The upgrade project also allowed the refrigeration systems to maintain operation during high ambients. Other benefits include a noise reduction per store of up to 7dB(A).