UK: Expanding chiller supplier Klima-Therm has announced two new distribution deals with leading international manufacturers.
As well as being appointed UK distributor of centrifugal chillers manufactured by Chinese manufacturer Gree, the Wimbledon-based supplier will also represent Korean company World Energy and its range of absorption chillers. The additions, together with its existing ranges of screw and Turbomiser chillers, mean that Klima-Therm now offers a complete range of chiller technologies.
The agreement with Gree enables Klima-Therm to offer high efficiency, cost-competitive centrifugal chiller solutions for the largest buildings and estates, requiring several megawatts of cooling capacity.
Star products in the Gree range are its variable speed centrifugal chiller and photovoltaic-powered inverter chiller. In addition to producing renewable electricity to drive the cooling system, the PV chiller can feed power directly into the grid, enabling the end user to benefit from electricity feed-in tariff.
Roberto Mallozzi, managing director of Klima-Therm, said: “We are delighted to have secured the distribution agreement with Gree. Having visited a number of their factories and headquarters in China, the quality and scale of the company is beyond impressive, it is breath-taking. After two decades of rapid growth, one in three residential air conditioning units in the world is now manufactured by Gree, an astonishing feat. Our goal is to make them as famous in the UK’s commercial sector.”
He added: “Although the Gree name is only just becoming established in the UK, the company acts as OEM for some of the world’s best known air conditioning brands. Visiting their vast production plants is like walking through a Hall of Fame, as branded equipment bearing the industry’s top names rolls off the production lines alongside Gree’s own systems.
“They have total confidence in Gree to produce outstanding quality products and, having seen their meticulous approach, R&D and manufacturing facilities, so do we.”
Klima-Therm is backing the launch of Gree centrifugal chillers with a five-year warranty, believed to be an industry first in UK chiller market.
Tim Mitchell, Klima-Therm’s sales director, said: “It demonstrates our confidence in Gree technology, and provides a compelling additional benefit for consultants and end users.
“With the acquisition of centrifugal and absorption chillers, we are now in the enviable position of being able to offer a range of fully referenced chiller alternatives for a project, enabling clients to decide on the most appropriate technical and commercial solution. Very few companies have the capability to do this.”
Klima-Therm’s strategy ideally positions the Wimbledon-based company to take advantage of the wave of major building projects taking place across London over the next five years. Upwards of 250 major projects are either under construction or in the pipeline, most of which will require large scale chiller-based cooling.
Gree has nine manufacturing plants, seven in China plus facilities in Brazil and Pakistan. It produces some 55 million residential air conditioners and 4.5 million commercial systems a year, and manufactures all key components such as compressors and motors.
A core philosophy of Gree is the move from “Made in China” to “Created in China”. As such, Gree manufactures all key components such as compressors and motors and operates five Research Institutes, 41 Research Centres, 530 laboratories, employing 7,000 engineers, and holds more than 12,000 technology patents.
Gree spent over US$630m on research and development in 2013 alone, and holds CE, UL and TUV certification.
World Energy deal
Commenting on the deal, Roberto Mallozzi said: “Harnessing waste heat in place of primary energy, such as electricity or gas, can deliver dramatic cost savings for end users, not to mention the environmental benefits. World Energy has been active in the field for many years and is absolutely at the forefront of technology. Its reputation for excellent design and reliability is well deserved.”
A characteristic of World Energy absorption systems is said to be their high efficiency, and their ability to operate across the widest range of waste heat types and temperatures.
In addition to reduced running costs, Klima-Therm believes there is a major opportunity for absorption systems in the UK as a result of the mandatory requirement to deliver a component of a building’s energy needs from renewable sources.
“Absorption technology also helps end users meet their obligations under the Zero Emission Building Directive, which is going to be a key market driver over the next decade or so,” says Roberto Mallozzi.
The company believes that greater use of absorption technology in the next few years will follow naturally from the expansion in the use of energy from waste, combined heat and power and micro-generation plants, which rely on high quality engineering-based solutions.
World Energy absorption systems can also be used to capture waste heat from engine and turbine exhaust gases, and are used in the marine industry to provide low-cost cooling for use on-board ships. Large scale application of absorption-based systems include district heating schemes.