GHQ EQUIPMENT, DESIGN & OPERATIONS
CEO of Axiom Exergy, based in Richmond,
Calif. “Refrigeration as a percentage of total
supermarket costs has increased faster than all
other categories. And with rising utility demand
charges, combined with pressure to offer more
fresh products in smaller format stores, the
sense of urgency for efficient and cost-effective
solutions is reaching a fever pitch,” he says.
EVOLVE OR PERISH
New technology is starting to be applied to maximize system capacity, improve product integrity and reduce service issues on larger storage
spaces by decreasing defrost times, minimizing
air turnover during product loading and pulling, which requires additional cooling. Experts
say this technology also saves energy on applications that do not have the “high load” issues, and can be applied to save
energy and control space temperature better in all of the circuits in the
supermarket, including refrigerated cases.
Additionally, advancements in communication technologies are
allowing service technicians to have remote access directly to the
controller, instead of only being able to log in
through the Enterprise Management System (EMS).
This allows for faster and more effective service
when dealing with any operational issues of refriger-
ated equipment. “Companies like Apple and Google
have helped to change the game in cost effective
and simple remote access to a wide range of devices
such as Wi-Fi thermostats, cameras and security
systems,” says Whitworth. “And now refrigeration
controls are easily accessible in the same manner.”
Cheryl Beach, manager, marketing communica-
tions, at Bridgeton, Mo.-based Hussmann, agrees
that when it comes to operating performance, dig-
ital technologies are playing an important role in
maintaining proper temperature within the display
zone, resulting in fresher product with longer shelf
life. This enables supply chain information for out-
of-stock and promotional pricing and alarm indicators for service and
maintenance. “Retailers are interested in features and qualities that will
ultimately have an impact on revenues and operating performance of
the supermarket, so it is imperative that refrigerated display cases offer
retailers solutions that influence those performance goals,” says Beach.
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