Transport refrigeration is a vital part of every cold chain: Perishable goods, mainly food but also medical supplies and other goods, have to be refrigerated on their way from harvest or production to the consumer. Refrigerated transport increases food safety and prevents economic losses due to spoilage. Trucks and trailers are in many parts of the world the main mode of transport for refrigerated goods.
Different requirements for long-distance transport in trailers and distribution traffic in smaller vehicles leads to a range of cooling capacities from 4 to 20 kW. Similar to mobile ACs in passenger cars, the refrigerant leakage is high. These are in particular caused through constant vibrations during operation and at times when difficult road conditions lead to loose connections. Leakage rates can be as high as 20-30% per year.
|Typical application||Trailers, large and small trucks but also containers and rail carriages are refrigerated in order to preserve perishable goods. Smaller units are connected to the motor directly or via an alternator. Bigger units have their own diesel units.|
|Typical end-users||Retailers, logistic companies|
|Main refrigerants used||HFC-134a, HFC-404a, HFC-410a Short-term replacement R-452a Charge size 1.5-7.5 kg average depending on cooling capacity|
|Natural refrigerant alternative||HC-290, R-744 (CO2) Cryogenic: liquid CO2 or N2|
|Growth rate / future demand||Continuously growing market especially in emerging economies as importance of temperature-controlled transport is recognized widely|