Co2 Keeping Refrigeration Innovative
By using recycled carbon dioxide (CO₂) as a refrigerant instead of synthetic refrigerants, Carrier is helping balance sustainability with efficiency and performance in commercial refrigeration systems.
CO₂, is a refrigerant of the future. Yet in developing CO₂ as a refrigerant to meet today’s needs for energy efficiency, capacity, and low power consumption, Carrier actually looked to the past. CO₂ was first proposed as a refrigerant as early as 1850, reaching its peak use in the mid-1920s, but fell out of favor with the development of synthetic refrigerants a few years later.
Carrier began research and development in the mid-1990s to better understand CO₂ technology for broad refrigeration applications. Since that time, they have made significant progress to improve designs with CO₂ as a working fluid. Carrier has developed breakthrough technologies that leverage advanced manufacturing processes, new, patented components and new materials to make CO₂ a viable refrigerant again.
In 2004, Carrier installed its first transcritical refrigeration system using CO₂ technology in a hypermarket – a large retail facility combining a supermarket and a department store – in Switzerland. After an intensive field trial phase, this technology was launched in 2009 as the CO2OLtec® refrigeration system. Today, CO2OLtec solutions are used to keep food fresh in thousands of European supermarkets and hypermarkets while reducing their carbon footprints by approximately 50 percent compared to systems using the synthetic refrigerant R404A.
Carrier employed the use of CO₂ beyond retail applications, developing sustainable solutions for transport refrigeration as well. In 2010, Carrier Transicold was the first to announce natural refrigerant container technology. Used to transport perishable, chilled and frozen goods, such as bananas, cookie dough, ice cream, meat and cheese, Carrier’s NaturaLINE® unit is the world’s first natural refrigerant container technology. By using naturally occurring, non-ozone-depleting CO₂, NaturaLINE represents an environmentally sound and sustainable technology.
But Carrier hasn’t stopped there. They made news again in 2011 when displayed a concept unit for over-the-road trailer refrigeration using CO₂.
As the natural leader, Carrier has integrated nature into new technologies to dramatically reduce the global warming potential, ozone depletion and carbon footprint of their products.