STUTTGART, Germany — Smardt Chiller Group Inc. has acquired Stuttgart’s OPK Klimatechnik AG. OPK has an array of patent properties that cover advances in heat exchange, variable-speed drives, free-cooling chiller controls and compressor optimization. OPK equipment has been installed across the world, from Asia to Africa, but has been focused on the German, Swiss, and Austrian markets, especially in industrial process and data center applications.

Smardt Chiller Group started with its PowerPax operations in Melbourne, Australia in 1999, then in Montreal, Canada in 2004, and since then has established facilities in Plattsburgh, N.Y., and Singapore. The group was established to optimize the energy efficiency benefits of the Turbocor oil-free centrifugal compressor technology to produce high-efficiency chillers.

“Smardt’s growth is driven by climate change and energy costs — and our oil-free centrifugal technology makes a major impact on both,” said Roger Richmond-Smith, Turbocor founder and Smardt group CEO. “This is not surprising when buildings account for 40 percent of the world’s total energy consumption, and in big buildings it’s the old chillers which eat up most of that. When we save 30-50 percent of annual energy costs, building owners across the world start to take notice,” he said.

“This is especially true in Europe, where the OPK Stuttgart factory gives us an initial footprint, OPK technologies give us some real product enhancements, and OPK’s people fit into our global team incredibly well,” Richmond-Smith added.

“We at OPK are delighted to join the fast-growing world of Smardt Chiller,” said OPK founder Erwin Ott, “because the move gives our people more opportunities and joining this global group adds impact and momentum to our HVAC technology innovations, which have been a well-kept secret so far.”

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Publication date:08/15/2011