One of the reasons why Tecumseh regularly exhibits at the AHR Expo is for the increased visibility that it provides within the refrigeration industry. As the company’s director of North American marketing, Joyce Mueller, explained, it is important for Tecumseh to participate in the Expo’s exhibits and presentations in order to connect with key players in the industry, as well as highlight the company’s products and latest innovations that drive Tecumseh’s mission of ‘cooling for a better tomorrow.’
“Tecumseh will never stray from our core compressor business,” she said. “However, we are excited to move toward the future with value-added products such as variable-speed technology, condensing units, and complete refrigeration systems. The world is changing, and we fully recognize the need for sustainable solutions; therefore, we are focused on developing solutions that leverage low-GWP refrigerants but also that improve overall efficiency, which reduces overall energy consumption.”
At the Expo this year, Tecumseh displayed its new ARGUS condensing unit lineup, which was launched at last year’s Expo. Since then, the company has released the full lineup of medium- and low-temperature units that are available in sizes ranging up to 6 HP. ARGUS units were designed from the ground up to exceed the 2020 DOE AWEF walk-in refrigeration system requirements.
“In any product we design, we incorporate feedback from all customer types; in particular, contractors were a key target audience for the design of our Tecumseh ARGUS condensing unit platform,” said Mueller. “This DOE 2020 AWEF compliant platform is unique in that the design process incorporated customer feedback, resulting in many innovative features such as a lighted service panel, removeable door, and QR code enabling wiring diagrams and other data to be accessed in the field from a mobile device.”
Tecumseh ARGUS is optimized specifically for HFO-blend refrigerants while also applying microchannel condenser coils that can reduce overall refrigerant charge. Fan assemblies and swept fan blades are extremely quiet compared to conventional fan blade and motor combinations, meeting the growing trend in buildings that require improved indoor environmental quality.
The complementary Tecumseh designed by LU-VE unit cooler lineup integrates with ARGUS for easy system design, noted Mueller.
“Tecumseh has entered into a product partnership with LU-VE Group to deliver innovative, high-quality unit coolers that deliver superior efficiency,” she said. “The Tecumseh unit coolers designed by LU-VE pair seamlessly with Tecumseh ARGUS condensing units — including the newly released low-temperature condensing units in our small and medium chassis to further enhance the company’s offerings in this space.”
Tecumseh’s variable-speed products, which include both AC and DC solutions, were also on display. The DC lineup, Masterflux, boasts a wide array of diverse applications ranging from marine and transport to geothermal home solutions. IntelliCOOL is the Tecumseh platform for AC variable-speed technology, and resident experts were on hand to talk about the many benefits of this technology, including the TAL (Tecumseh Adaptive Logic) features that enable superior efficiency.
Tecumseh IntelliCOOL monitors and controls the evaporator and condenser fan motors, as well as compressor speed, to precisely control cabinet temperature. As the cabinet temperature varies, programming logic determines the speed the compressor requires to maintain temperature while minimizing temperature over-shoot and rapid cycling. Essentially, IntelliCOOL matches compressor capacity to the refrigeration system’s cooling demand. The speed of the compressor continuously adapts to ensure the refrigerated cabinet is maintaining optimal temperature, while using the lowest amount of energy.
Also highlighted in Tecumseh’s booth was a self-contained refrigeration system that showcased the company’s unique ability to customize solutions for its OEM partners. The CRS (complete refrigeration systems) solutions are designed to use the latest low-GWP refrigerants, including R-290, and to optimize efficiency in a compact space.
“We have designed a solution that can be mounted on the top, bottom, or side, so it takes care of all three different kinds of applications,” said Akash Bhatia, director of global engineering at Tecumseh. “It can be used for medium- and low-temperature applications, and the size range goes from fractional horsepower up to .75 hp.”
The unit has a very low charge of propane, but Tecumseh also offers the CRS with HFO blends in case there is an application where the propane cannot go, such as near vending machines that have a heating element.
“It is a plug-and-play solution, so it’s very easy to install in the field,” said Bhatia. “If it needs to be repaired, it can be removed and replaced with a new unit. It comes with all the controls and connectivity, so it can be connected to a building automation system.”
ON THE HORIZON
There are several trends of note in the refrigeration industry right now, said Mueller, including the growth of low-GWP solutions, particularly R-290, in North America. Despite their lower charge limit of 150 grams, there is still an opportunity to use these refrigerants in many cooling solutions, such as Tecumseh’s CRS products.
“Tecumseh has been in business for more than 85 years and offers a comprehensive lineup of compressors designed to accommodate natural refrigerants such as R-290 and other low-GWP options as well as traditional refrigerants,” she said.
On the OEM side, there is a trend towards accommodating smaller and more flexible store footprints as consumers continue to demand more and more convenience but with fresh and healthier options.
“Tecumseh is working with a variety of companies globally to tackle these challenges and to leverage our technical expertise to provide solutions to the ultimate end users,” said Mueller. “Tecumseh is proud to offer the broadest lineup of products in light commercial refrigeration.”
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