PT Contained Energy Indonesia Launches Solar Powered Cold Storage – The 100% Independent Solar Powered Off-Grid Refrigeration Solution with Zero Operating Costs
- Category: Press Releases
09 Aug 2012
- Published on Thursday, 09 August 2012 04:10
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It is widely accepted that fishing- (and farming-) communities can substantially increase their income if refrigeration is available. However, in remote communities, where no grid power is available, the conventional solution of powering refrigeration with diesel gensets often fails because of significant operating costs and logistical challenges. Even where grid-power is available, frequent power outages pose a problem and can result in substantial losses.
Now, there is a solution that overcomes these problems.
Contained Energy has developed and successfully deployed stand-alone, off-grid, 100% solar-powered cold storage facilities with unique cost-economy through application of thermal energy storage (TES) technology in combination with ultra-efficient compressor packages.
The system operates without external power source and thus has zero energy costs.
The first two units 20 m3 installed, one on a remote island in Wakatobi and another in Pacitan, Indonesia, were designed to keep 1000 kg of fish at -2º C, in ambient temperatures of up to 40 C, with the capacity of adding and cooling 200 kg of ‘un-iced’ fish per day (for a total cooling load of 30 kWh per day), but the system can just as easily be deployed for agricultural produce, dairy chilling, ice-making and other purposes as well.
It is energized by a 6.4 kWp solar array through a 3-phase Outback inverter system, backed up by a relatively small 10 kWh VRLA battery bank. One of the unique features of the system is that it incorporates a large volume of Phase Change Material (PCM) in the ceiling, capable of storing 15 kWh of cooling capacity at -4º C. This thermal energy storage technology allows the compressor package to do most of its ‘work’ during the day, when the solar power is available. This saves a substantial quantity of battery storage that would otherwise be required.
The unit features walls, ceiling and floors constructed from 15cm insulated modular panels, stainless steel door with heating element, aluminum chequered floor plates, lighting and a programmable digital control system.
The high-quality solar array, the largest cost component of the system, comes with 25 years performance warranty and an expected productive life of 30+ years, whereas the economic life of inverters, compressor and housing is designed for 10-15 years. The industrial VRLA deep-cycle gel batteries only need replacement every 6-7 years. Cost of ownership over its design life is thus extremely low and in many locations, ROI for the system, compared to ‘conventional’ fuel- or grid-powered units, can be as low as 2-3 years.
This particular system can be build into a 20’ shipping container. Other sizes and capacities, such as walk-in freezers, down to -30 º C are possible as well.