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R450A increases efficiency in CO2 cascade

SPAIN: Honeywell is having further success in deploying lower GWP HFO refrigerant blend R450A in combination with CO2 in cascade refrigeration systems.

The latest installation is at a 12,000m² refrigerated distribution centre operated by Spanish food cooperative Covirán in Coslada, Madrid.

Covirán is made up of more than 2,800 small and medium-sized independent retailers and is the second largest in Spain in terms of sales, and number three in Portugal. In 2014, Covirán had over 3,245 supermarkets in the Iberian Peninsula.

Covirán worked closely with its Logroño-based specialist partner Systemfrost to develop a solution that would combine best-in-class performance with sustainability. Systemfrost designed a cascade system utilising R450A – an HFO/HFC blend with a GWP of 601, marketed by Honeywell as Solstice N13 – and CO2. It was designed to meet key criteria around energy efficiency, emissions reduction and refrigeration performance.

A blend of 42% R134a and 58% HFO1234ze(E), R450A has a GWP of around 601, less than half that of R134a. The total charge of R450A in the Covirán system is 1,020kg.


The new refrigeration installation designed by Systemfrost includes three freezer rooms, one dual-temperature room and a large, chilled dispatch area.

The system is expected to reduce annual energy consumption by more than 3% and achieve lower direct carbon dioxide emissions of 60% annual compared to a similar system using R134a, the traditional refrigerant used in such applications.

Describing R450A as being easy to handle, Systemfrost engineer Eloy Moreno said, “We considered the customer’s request to improve carbon footprint and worked closely with engineering consultant Tewis to accommodate the lowest possible GWP refrigerant into the most efficient design. So far, the results have been very positive.”

Tewis is a Spanish-based leading specialist international refrigeration energy consultancy. It pioneered work with R450A in an installation to replace R404A in a Dia supermarket in Valencia last year (Spanish store first to test new R404a drop-in).

A similar application of R450A in a CO2 cascade system was included in an Auchan hypermarket near Paris in 2013.


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R450A replaces R134a in CO2 cascade system

R450A replaces R134a in CO2 cascade system


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