Glaciem Cooling Technologies is to demonstrate its refrigeration, thermal energy storage and heat transfer technologies which are designed to integrate with solar PV electricity generation.
The Adelaide company has received $2 million in funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) as part of a $4.9 million trial at three locations.
The company will install its technology at Ceravolo Orchards at Oakbank in the Adelaide Hills, Pernod Ricard Winemakers in the Barossa Valley and the Reef HQ Aquarium in Townsville. Pernod Ricard owns the Jacob’s Creek wine brand.
The sites will feature three Glaciem technologies:
* thermal energy storage and discharge through a heat transfer process
* use of carbon dioxide as a natural refrigerant for transfer fluid in heat pumps, instead of harmful hydrofluorocarbon
* an Advanced Control and Forecasting Algorithm (ACFA) control system which reduces costs by forecasting weather and electricity prices to make the most of the energy storage available
Glaciem’s saltwater phase change (PCM) material has been developed with the University of South Australia to have a freezing and melting point of minus 6 degrees celsius, which is suitable for cold storage and air conditioning.
The system captures renewable energy from solar panels to freeze the PCM solution, which can be thawed to provide a source of cold air for cooling or refrigeration when electricity prices are high.
The system was developed with the support of an ARENA research and development grant announced in 2016 and first demonstrated at Parilla Premium Potatoes.
Glaciem Managing Director Julian Hudson said the project “will demonstrate that there are real viable alternatives for end users of HVAC&R [heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration] that drastically reduce operating costs, maximise the economic potential of renewable energy assets and reduce direct and indirect CO2 emissions.”
ARENA CEO Darren Miller said: “The pilot sites trialling Glaciem’s technology will demonstrate that refrigeration equipment, grid supply and on-site renewable energy generation can be reliably integrated across a range of commercial businesses.”
In Australia, heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration consume around 22 per cent of all electricity produced.
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