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The best time to save energy


When is the best time to save energy in industrial refrigeration?

Energy can be saved when opportunities exist. During summer operation, a little energy can be saved because the majority of refrigeration plants operate at full capacity. Cool weather will give us an opportunity to save energy. The following energy saving measures can be implemented:

Optimized condensing  pressure

Optimized part load operation

Optimized hot gas defrosting


During periods of cool weather, condensing pressure should float to follow fluctuation of wet bulb temperature. However, every refrigeration plant has a minimum allowable condensing pressure. It is very important to keep this pressure as low as possible because a refrigeration plant will operate longer at optimum condensing pressure and more energy can be saved. Many refrigeration plants have a minimum condensing pressure of 110 - 120 psig to provide adequate hot gas defrosting. My research has shown that the majority of refrigeration plants can be defrosted at condensing pressure of 70 - 80 psig. This is not back pressure regulator setting. This is minimum allowable condensing pressure. During winter operation, condensing pressure of many refrigeration pants can be lowered by 30 - 40 psig. This is a huge energy saving. Usually, lower condensing pressure saves up to 50% of total energy savings. If you do defrosting at condensing pressure higher than 100 psig, most likely this pressure can be lowered and energy can be saved.


This fall I continue my campaign of free energy savings for industrial refrigeration plants. Initial part of remote tuning up is free because it does not require a visit to the plant. Usually, at this stage of optimization I help end users to reduce minimum condensing pressure by 10 - 20 psig. A typical energy saving of this step is $20,000 - 50,000. No investment is required. However, remote tuning up requires participation of operating engineers in initial optimization of a refrigeration plant operation. Anybody interested in this tuning up, please contact me.


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