Refrigeration / Compressors

HVACR Trend: Compressor Electronics

September 26, 2011
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Costly issues like food spoilage, compressor failures, and undetected rack problems are among the leading concerns of retailers and refrigeration contractors. Compressor electronics technology pioneered by Emerson Climate Technologies can enhance compressor and system performance by sensing and interpreting information found inside the compressor, providing new levels of protection and diagnostics.

According to Emerson, traditional refrigeration systems did not provide the operator all of the information they needed to optimize their facility. With new compressor electronics technology, retailers can get a view of how their refrigeration system is functioning and be alerted to problems before they become disruptive issues.

The field solution below shows that supermarkets are benefiting from compressor electronics for refrigeration.

A Compressor As Sensor

Emerson launched its concept of compressor electronics eight years ago when its engineers developed a method to use the compressor as a sensor to detect system and electrical problems. Since then, the company has brought products to the HVACR market that help diagnose system problems before severe compressor damaging faults occur.

Its compressor electronics technology, which uses Copeland compressors as a sensor, gives contractors, facility maintenance, and building owners access to information inside the compressor so they can identify performance issues quickly and accurately to ensure greater reliability. When adverse operating conditions are detected, CoreSense electronics alert operators. When warranted under more serious conditions, CoreSense electronics will shut down the compressor to help avoid system damage, saving contractors and businesses valuable time and money.

Solving Today’s Refrigeration Issues

When Premier Refrigeration Co. installed a system featuring compressor electronics for a major retailer, they tested their belief that refrigeration problems can be avoided with regular maintenance and proper diagnostics.

According to a trial they completed with Emerson, Premier Refrigeration benefited from compressor electronics by preventing two potential compressor failures within weeks of start-up, avoiding a $5,000 repair bill with no loss of product, and diagnosing intermittent rack problems that would have been impossible to detect.

Lowe’s Markets, a supermarket chain with 146 stores in west Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and Colorado, switched to Copeland Discus Digital compressors with CoreSense Diagnostics on their refrigeration racks.

By integrating several traditional components into one control module, the new compressor requires less wiring and fewer connection points, improving system quality and ensuring installation ease and consistency, said the manufacturer.

The digital capacity modulation technology, which is designed to review and adapt within seconds, delivered an unloading strategy to precisely match the capacity with the product load over the variable operating conditions typical of supermarket applications.

Specifically, by using advanced compressor technology, the retailer:

• Raised the saturated suction temperature 3° on a three compressor group resulting in 4 percent energy reduction;

• Reduced time to recondition equipment from 2.5 hours to 40 minutes per compressor for installation and wiring; and

• Simplified compressor troubleshooting which allows 85 percent of diagnostics to be done remotely before sending technicians to the store.

Compressor electronics technology provides new levels of protection and diagnostics by enhancing compressor and system performance. With technology to sense and interpret information found inside the compressor, retailers can use compressor electronics to address their leading concerns.

Publication date: 09/26/2011

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