“To meet the requirements of the F-Gas regulation, our duty is to recommend a long-term solution for our customers, while taking into consideration their budget. R-448A met our requirements and was simple to implement." G. Struvay – Refrigeration manager for Henkens Frères s.a.
Detry is a family-owned company in Belgium that has been producing and marketing a wide range of charcuterie since 1963. Operating under its flagship Aubel brand, Detry is known and recognised by Belgian consumers, and ranks second in the Belgian market for supermarket self-service charcuterie. As part of the reorganisation of manufacturing at its main Aubel site, Detry decided to decentralise part of its charcuterie production and move into a building a few kilometres from Herve. The objective was for everything to be contained in a new 2500m2 area.
Henkens Frères; a versatile company with highly respected experience in areas such as refrigeration, heating equipment and industrial boilerwork for the food industry, assisted Detry in selecting an innovative and sustainable solution for the new chilling system.
"We keep a close watch on changes in refrigeration fluids. In particular, we like to recommend natural refrigerants and indirect systems (ammonia and glycol) for industrial processes but the choice of solution is based primarily on installation criteria and the customer's budget," said Struvay.
To meet its requirements and keep within the customer's budget, Henkens opted for a direct expansion system using the new Solstice® N40 refrigerant fluid with a low GWP (1387). Distributed by Climalife, Solstice® N40 (R-448A) was considered the best solution for this customer, given the changes to the regulations.
"It's an essential criteria today; we can't offer an intermediate solution. We have to meet the requirements of F-Gas; the customer trusts us and it's our duty to choose a fluid for the future," said Joseph Toussaint, a maintenance manager.
A Refra branded unit was chosen with a power of 250 kW, comprising four Bitzer 4FE28Y40P compressors with a Searle air-cooled condenser for operating conditions between -7°C and + 40°C. A Carel control system with Danfoss variable frequency drives and Danfoss R-407F/R407A expansion valves were installed.
The unit supplies 15 work areas whose activities range from receipt of goods to product preparation: ie shaping, cooking and cooling the cooked meat before packing, storage and dispatch. The shops are all equipped with Kuba evaporators and the ambient temperature varies between +2°C and +10°C. The cooling installation is filled with 420 kg of R-448A.
The cooling system has been in operation since October 2015. It took Henkens Frères' technicians over 4500 hours work to implement this new system, including the heating and compressed air elements.
"Solstice N40 caused no problems, even where discharge temperatures were concerned, which was one of our main worries. There was no oil return problem; we were quickly satisfied with the results," Toussaint explained.