Panasonic UK has selected specialist and experienced refrigeration company Green Cooling as one of its launch UK distributors to bring its range of natural CO2 condensing refrigeration units to the UK market.

The range has been specifically developed for small to medium capacity applications within the retail and food service sectors, and is particularly suited for installations in small supermarkets, convenience stores and garage forecourt retail operations. The range is also suited to the provision of refrigeration within the restaurant and hotel sectors.

Panasonic has much expertise in this market. In Japan, these CO2 condensing units have been installed since 2010 in over 6,600 applications; they are well proven and have demonstrated reliable and efficient performance.

By combining reliability and efficiency with the natural refrigerant, CO2, the range removes any risk of future costs associated with the F-Gas refrigerant phase-down, whilst also minimising energy use and operating costs.

Garry Broadbent, commercial director of Green Cooling said: “CO2 is a highly efficient, safe and natural form of refrigeration technology. This Panasonic CO2 condensing range is able to deliver on both cost and carbon savings. Based on Panasonic monitored data, 16 percent energy savings for chilled refrigeration and 25 percent energy savings for lower temperature freezer applications have been achieved in comparison to R404A.”

He added: “Flexibility of installation and reliability are the key to success. In the retail and food service sectors, a very high standard of equipment is required to deliver reliable performance. The Panasonic range achieves this with a focus on efficiency, low noise and reliability.”

With changes to the F-Gas regulations coming into force, alongside the reduction of carbon emissions and energy costs as additional key drivers for change in refrigeration systems, both specifiers and end users are recognising the need to consider CO2 as a refrigerant.

Neil Bilton, head of key accounts at Panasonic UK said: “The new Panasonic CO2 condensing units use a natural refrigerant that has a global warming potential (GWP) equal to 1, as opposed to the current refrigerant typically used, such as R404A, having a GWP equal to 3,800. With refrigeration legislation increasing over the coming years, HFC R404A will be out of circulation by 2020. Given the above, and to minimise future risk to businesses, CO2 seems to be the best way to go for refrigeration needs.”

David Blinkhorn, technical director of Green Cooling, has been at the forefront of European CO2 development; he designed the first CO2 installation within a large scale food service application in 2010 at the Café Royal Hotel in Piccadilly and, due to this high level of experience, is well positioned to support the application of the Panasonic range.

The Panasonic CO2 condensing units come in two sizes at 4kW and 15kW (both at -10oC evaporating temperature). They are compact, lightweight and have very low noise levels.

Mr Broadbent added that a good system design provides “efficiency, value and energy savings. The Panasonic CO2 refrigeration systems provide all of these, whilst also delivering high levels of sustainability and future-proofing an application against the effects of the F-Gas regulations.”

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