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Technology in Action Conference — Keynote Speaker and Breakout Session Announced

Our Technology in Action Conference is now only days away, and anticipation is building toward our three-day commercial retail optimization event. Like last year, the many interactive panel discussions and breakout sessions will provide a perfect format for attendees to interact with the industry’s most experienced end users, expert practitioners and equipment manufacturers. As we come together to discuss the most pressing topics in retail refrigeration today, we’re confident everyone in attendance will leave with new perspectives to better optimize their facilities and more effectively navigate the changing regulatory and refrigerant landscapes.

Keynote Speaker: Mr. Jim Donald

To kick off this this year’s event, Jim Donald, former CEO of Starbucks and Pathmark Supermarkets and current CEO of Extended Stay America Hotels, will deliver the conference’s keynote address. Donald’s distinguished career in retail includes being named one the “Top 25 CEOs in the World” by The Best Practice Institute and one of Business Travel News’ “25 Most Influential Business Travel Executives of 2013.” Donald’s reputation for turning around financially ailing companies prompted Extended Stay Hotels to seek him out after the company emerged from bankruptcy proceedings in 2010. Under Donald’s leadership, the company recently launched a successful $565 million IPO. In his keynote address, Donald will share his experiences as a leader focused on innovation, quality, service, strong relationships within the community, and risk-taking with the freedom to fail.

Breakout Sessions — Covering a Variety of Topics

With multiple breakout sessions to choose from, attendees are sure to find topics that address their specific concerns and provide opportunities to learn from the experiences of their peers. Are you getting the most from variable capacity air conditioning systems? One breakout session will introduce variable capacity HVAC equipment and explore key technologies that enable variable capacity control and part-load efficiency improvements. Do you think of refrigerants as an expense, not an asset? Treating refrigerants as an asset adds new value to your organization. This breakout session discusses approaches to protecting the asset and monetizing it. Other breakout session topics include:

  • Improving store operations through enhanced facility processes
  • CO2 system design considerations (two-part session)
  • Geothermal HVAC and refrigeration systems
  • Improving store operations through enhanced facility processes
  • The good, bad and ugly of transforming existing properties into new grocery stores

If you’ve made plans to attend the conference April 14–16, we will see you soon! If you can’t make it this year, be sure to follow our live updates from the event on Twitter by following the hashtag #EmersonTAC.

Reggie O’Donoghue
Product Management, Retail Solutions
Emerson Climate Technologies

TAC Panels Make Sense of Refrigerants, Operational Visibility and Energy-Reduction Technologies

With our Technology in Action Conference only one week away, we’re eagerly anticipating a series of informative sessions that will allow attendees to interact with the industry’s leading retail refrigeration experts. Building on the success of last year’s format, we’ve once again designed the conference to encourage participation and foster lively debates about the most pressing topics in refrigeration today.

For this year’s theme, we’re adopting the Making Sense webinar platform, selecting topics that are closely related to refrigerants, operation visibility and energy-reduction technologies. And, we’ve once again invited a wide spectrum of experienced end users, expert practitioners and equipment manufacturers to facilitate these discussions and impart their knowledge.

Here’s a brief overview of our interactive sessions:

Discussion One: Optimizing Facility Operational Costs. Explore the landscape of available strategies, tools, services and equipment to help achieve operational cost effectiveness today. Panelists will discuss how these tools can help retailers achieve their facility’s cost reduction goals. Discussion points include:

  • Factors to consider when optimizing a facility
  • Optimizing project development and prioritization
  • Challenges to achieving facility optimization
  • Optimization strategies, tools, equipment and services

Discussion Two: The Case for Case Control. By shifting centralized control of refrigeration operation to individual cases, retailers can significantly reduce energy costs. Learn why case control has not been more widely adopted in the U.S., and explore the implications of case control installation and operation.

  • Installation cost savings and contractor considerations
  • Potential for energy savings
  • Maintenance and commissioning
  • Refrigerant usage

Discussion Three: The Impact of New Air Conditioning Efficiency Standards. Changes to regulations in 2015–2016 will increase the minimum efficiency levels of air conditioning equipment. Learn more about these regulations, review the available technologies, and discuss the implications for both air conditioning equipment and facility design.

  • Changes to the ASHRAE 90.1 standard (and the timing)
  • Importance of full-load and part-load efficiencies
  • Understanding the impacts of voluntary standards (ENERGY STAR™, Consortium for Energy Efficiencies, and others)
  • Equipment design implications (circuit design, variable capacity compressors, expansion valves, etc.)

Discussion Four: Refrigerants — An Asset or Liability? Changes in regulations that mandate refrigerant use are impacting refrigeration architecture in new and existing stores. Learn which refrigerants to use for retrofits and new system designs, in addition to these important discussion points:

  • Best practices in refrigerant management for existing stores
  • A new way of thinking about refrigerants (no longer just an expense item)
  • Establishing a plan to reduce global warming emissions (including R-22 and R404A retrofits)
  • Regulatory and political forces that will impact existing store refrigerant decisions

This event takes place April 14–16 in Point Clear, Ala. Visitwww.emersontac.orgto learn more. While at the event, we will be tweeting live discussion updates using the hashtag #EmersonTAC. We hope you will be able to join the conversations!

Mitch Knapke
Refrigeration Market Manager, Supermarkets
Emerson Climate Technologies

Careful Compressor Selection Improves Refrigeration System Efficiencies

In a regulatory environment where phase-down proposals for refrigerants containing HFCs are giving rise to a new class of refrigerant alternatives, retailers are faced with making decisions about how to design refrigeration systems. Our recent Making Sense webinar, entitled “Best Practices for Evaluating Compressor System Performance,” took a closer look at this issue to help retailers balance sustainability concerns within the contexts of evaluating operating costs, maintenance requirements and readiness of available technology.

From distributed DX rack systems that reduce refrigerant charge to cascading and transcritical booster CO2-based systems, today’s refrigeration systems are become increasingly complex in response to regulatory and consumer demands. Not only do these more complex systems reduce refrigerant charge, they also promise improved energy efficiencies and lower GWP potential. Choosing a compressor that meets these demanding requirements is a critical aspect of refrigeration system design.

Through Emerson Climate’s software-guided selection tools, we’re helping retailers make this important decision. When selecting a compressor that meets your application’s requirements, you must carefully evaluate factors that impact compressor performance:

  • Difference between mid-point and dew point
  • Compressor and evaporator capacity
  • Mechanical sub-cooling and vapor injection

Once retailers have a good idea of fundamental design conditions — from refrigerant choice and mid-point selection to minimum condensing temperature and liquid sub-cooling preferences — they can use our product selection software to recommend the best available compressor option.

As we explained in the webinar, we suggest the following best practices when selecting a compressor for your next refrigeration system:

  • Use mid-point, not dew point, as the basis of the decision, because that’s essentially what the refrigeration system is seeing.
  • To avoid oversizing your system, let evaporator capacity (rather than compressor capacity) inform the decision process. This provides a better reflection of how the system would operate.

At the end of the day, the primary goal retailers should keep in mind is to select a compressor capable of meeting the load at the highest ambient temperature while providing the best annual energy efficiency. To learn more about how to select the right compressor for your application, please visit our Making Sense website and listen to the archived webinar on demand.

Mike Saunders
Director, End User Technical Sales and Support
Emerson Climate Technologies

SNAP, CAP and all That: Feedback From the Recent EPA Meeting on HFCs

During the past several months, the Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) program hosted a series of sector-specific workshops and a broad stakeholder meeting. In February, I participated in the EPA’s broad stakeholder meeting on possible future actions and direction concerning hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) under the SNAP program and the Climate Action Plan (CAP).

The purpose of the February 2014 meeting was to promote a dialogue between stakeholders and the EPA on possible next steps and effective approaches to meet the president’s goals under CAP. At the meeting, the EPA announced plans for two separate SNAP rule-making proposals this year:

Expanding the list of low-GWP refrigerants for air conditioning and refrigeration applications — under consideration are ethane, iso-butane, propane, R-441A (HC blend) and HFC-32. All of these refrigerants (except HFC-32) have a GWP of less than 10. Since these refrigerants are also flammable, the EPA is planning to adopt safety standards and propose specific uses for each refrigerant. The EPA expects to move on this in spring 2014.

Changing the approval status of certain high-GWP HFCs in specific applications — the EPA is not expected to issue any across-the-board GWP limits, but instead will consider the end use and target-specific applications where viable options already exist and are being used. For instance, a high-GWP refrigerant in one application may be considered in the low- to mid-range for another. In addition, servicing existing equipment will not be impacted to help prevent stranding capital.

The five proposed specific application and HFC status changes include:

  • Vending machines and stand-alone, reach-in bottle coolers — changing the status (banning the use) of R-134a and blends with a higher GWP
  • Multiplex supermarket refrigeration — banning the use of R-404A, R-507A, and blends with a higher GWP. Retaining R-407A/C/F and R-134a or any approved refrigerant with a GWP lower than R-404A and R-507.
  • Motor vehicle air conditioning — banning the use of R-134a
  • Non-medical and non-technical aerosols — banning the use of R-134a, HFC-227ea and HFC-125. Retaining HFC-152a.
  • Various foam blowing — banning the use of R-134a and higher-GWP refrigerants

The EPA expects to move on this in summer 2014.

We believe these proposals are a logical approach to CAP and welcome additional clarity to HFC action in the industry. However, these measures will not be accomplished without significant investments by our industry in equipment and training, and these investments need to be considered in conjunction with the recent U.S. Department of Energy’s proposed improved energy efficiency standards for commercial refrigeration equipment.

Stay tuned for further details including effective dates as the actual proposals are targeted for release this spring and summer. Emerson will continue to be involved in the process and provide feedback when appropriate to the EPA. We are open to arranging discussions around this topic and look forward to your thoughts on these proposals.

Rajan Rajendran, Ph.D.
Vice President, Engineering Services and Sustainability
Emerson Climate Technologies

Best Practices for Evaluating Compressor System Performance — Making Sense Webinar

To help select the proper refrigeration equipment in specific applications, many commercial retailers today are closely monitoring their compressor systems for valuable performance data. One way this is possible is through the use of software that calculates performance in a variety of scenarios. Whether through conducting annual energy analyses or evaluating efficiencies based on geographic locations, retailers are using the power of software tools to improve visibility across their operations.

In our next installment of the Making Sense webinar series, we’ll take a closer look at this subject and discuss the best practices for evaluating compressor system performance. We’ll explore the following key concepts:

  • Comparison of compressor and evaporator capacities
  • Mid-point and dew point compressor selections
  • Difference between Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) and Annual Energy Efficiency Ratio (AEER)

And, you’ll learn how to use software to improve a variety of operations, planning and analysis activities, including:

  • Equipment planning and selection
  • Calculate annual compressor performance
  • Conduct energy analyses
  • Evaluate compressor performance in specific geographic locations

You’ll find there are many ways that compressor system performance data can help you improve operational visibility.

Our second webinar in the “Operational Visibility” category will be presented by Emerson Climate’s own Mike Saunders and Autumn Nicholson. Mike is the director of end user technical sales and support and has more than 18 years of experience in refrigeration product development. As a senior sales engineer, Autumn’s an expert on compressor and refrigeration system energy and Total Equivalent Warming Impact (TEWI) analysis, with a focus on refrigeration alternatives and system architecture.

Join us on March 11 at 2 p.m. EDT to learn the best practices for evaluating compressor system performance. Register now by visiting our website at While you’re there, be sure to check out the archives of other Making Sense webinars — it’s how we’re helping the refrigeration industry MAKE SENSE of the issues that matter most.

Craig Raney
Director of Marketing, Refrigeration
Emerson Climate Technologies


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