Welsh fridge company Sure Chill is saving lives all over the world by using a bank of ice to replace Freon, providing constant 4°C for 12 days with no risk of freezing.
This natural cooling technology, which is being used in 40 countries, was created by the Sure Chill Company and has already been licensed to two manufacturers in South Africa and India.
Nigel Saund, a technician from Sure Chill, said: “Developing countries that have either poor or intermittent power where our refrigerators provide perfect cooling where others would and do fail, or in countries off-grid where solar can be teamed with our refrigerators.”
This cooling technique is not only needed in developing countries, where cooling temperature is unstable and the power supply system is easily interrupted, it is also being useful in some developed countries, such as America and Japan, also applied this in their supermarket with minimum waste of electricity and no risk of freezing.
“Refrigerators can improve refrigeration through its consistent cooling with no risk of freezing which can damage vaccine potencies. The other major advantage recognised by partners in the developed countries is the technology’s ability to significantly reduce running costs,” said Mr Saund.
This cooling system is also called perfect 4°C fridge. The technology relies on creating a bank of ice that water beneath the ice surrounds the refrigerator compartment.
Mr Saund said: “The surface of the lake can be frozen in the winter, while the water beneath is quite warm. This is the idea of creating a bank of ice and 4°C water is the heaviest and being perfect for the storage of vaccines, medical supplies as well as food and drinks.”
Using a bank of ice to replace Freon as refrigerant could not only providing active cooling but also storing power for more than twelve days. When the power supply system is interrupted, the ice water will be gradually warmer, but the ice on the surface will slightly fall and provides consistent 4°C cooling throughout the storage compartment for much longer.
“The refrigerator provides the end user with an energy saving but also can significantly reduce energy costs as it can use electricity at its cheapest. Amazingly our vaccine refrigerator can provide over 12 days active cooling in an ambient of 32°C. The refrigerators provides the end user with an energy saving but also can significantly reduce energy costs as it can use electricity at its cheapest,” said Mr Saund.
This is also an environmental technology in terms of energy saving and natural refrigerant replacement, so it can be used in both daily life and medical sector as it used in restore vaccine in typhoon-hit Philippine, for the Domestic and Food and Beverage markets.
“The biggest challenge is the price for £1000. If the refrigerator can be manufactured in a high volume, the price would be driven down to compete with current large scale manufacturers,” said Mr Saund.
One of the students in Cardiff university who works in Costa said: “I do not think ordinary people, just like me, would buy it and I would pay no more than £70 for a fridge no matter how luxury it is. But the idea is pretty cool.”
The Sure Chill received support from the Welsh government for the new research based in Snowdonia and to promote the global reach of the business. They have also received support and have worked in conjunction with The Bill and Melinda Gates on two projects aimed at improving the vaccine cold chain.
The Welsh fridge company is seeking to spread the Sure Chill Technology reach through licensing the technology to partners who will manufacture devices with the Sure Chill Technology.
By Miao Miao