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Wallace Speaks on Smart Technology at the Senate

Dean Landeche_Blog Dean Landeche | Vice President of Marketing , Cold Chain
Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions

This blog summarizes an article from our E360 program, entitled Wallace Delivered Senate Testimony.” Click here to read it in its entirety.

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John Wallace, Emerson’s director of innovation, visited Washington in October to meet with members of the Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources. The topic of the meeting? Energy management and building control systems. Several other industry leaders joined Wallace in discussing ways “smart” technology can reduce energy use and costs in HVAC, refrigeration and lighting systems. Here’s a summary of what was discussed.

Energy efficiency in these types of systems is a hot topic, seeing as they account for up to 90 percent of a typical building’s energy consumption. Depending on the type of facility, the energy consumption averages are as follows:

  • Refrigeration: 30–40%
  • HVAC: 20–30%
  • Lighting: 15–20%

More efficient equipment can be easily incorporated into new buildings. However, the problem lies in the fact that newer buildings are only a small portion of a multi-site operator’s portfolio, and the majority of buildings in use are older and more difficult to modernize. Because of this, Emerson is working with customers to develop technologies that can be seamlessly integrated into existing, older buildings. Adding these new technologies and incorporating smart building strategies, like utilizing natural refrigerants and applying variable-speed technologies, can help improve sustainability efforts while lowering operating costs in both new and existing buildings.

Wallace explained that integrating HVAC, refrigeration and lighting systems into building automation and supervisory controls systems can help building operators gain insights into energy use, reduce consumption and lower costs.

“Technology such as Emerson’s Site Supervisor building automation system integrates equipment controls, provides sensors to monitor key metrics within the building, and utilizes IoT technologies to connect buildings to cloud-based services, providing remote access to equipment from off-site,” said Wallace.

IoT technology continues to open doors for facility and operations managers, allowing them to optimize their operations inside their buildings while simultaneously reacting to and coordinating with services outside of their buildings. Because all of this and more can be monitored off-site, energy use can be reduced across an entire portfolio of buildings.

IoT technology also has a hand in demand response programs for foodservice and retail operations. Demand response programs provide incentives (typically monetary) to building operators in exchange for lowering their instantaneous peak demand for electricity. The challenge for building operators is to find a way to “shed” energy to lower costs and earn incentives without sacrificing food safety or negatively impacting the shopping experience.

“Newer technologies that provide the potential for building operators to autonomously aggregate peak demand reductions across multiple buildings, as well as shifting demand peaks, can provide smarter buildings and more intelligence on the way these types of programs are implemented,” said Wallace. Pairing these technologies with demand response incentive programs could help building operators cultivate more efficient and sustainable environments, all while operating at lower costs than before.

Wallace assured the Senate committee that Emerson will continue to look for ways to incorporate innovative technologies to strike a balance between local control of the building equipment and the external services that can optimize operations, not only of an individual building, but also across a portfolio of buildings. With new technology being developed every day and smart strategies slowly becoming more popular, the industry has a bright and sustainable future ahead.


C-Store Trends Through 2025

Dean Landeche_Blog Dean Landeche | Vice President of Marketing , Cold Chain
Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions

I sat down with the editors of Convenience Store Decisions to discuss trends that will be shaping the future of U.S. convenience stores. Zandi Brehmer, head of client innovation at global research firm Euromonitor International, joined the conversation. Emerson commissioned Euromonitor to identify trends through 2025.


Focus on the customer

Retailers in this space are obviously concerned with convenience, but we are seeing an increased interest in cultivating customer relationships. Shifting the focus on the consumers from the checkout to when they enter a store may generate a big payoff. Modern technological systems such as wireless sensors in c-stores can potentially free up staff to focus on higher-value customer interactions. As these solutions become more prevalent, convenience stores can become more nimble to address the changing needs of their customer base.

Experiential retail

Driven by a digital revolution and rapidly changing consumer expectations, convenience operators are turning to new strategies to stay competitive. As product offerings are becoming more interchangeable, the shopping experience is a differentiator for retailers. Recent studies show that 78% of millennials would rather spend money on a desirable experience than on goods.

Supply chain management

Finally, better inventory management will likely distinguish convenience store operations in the future. Not only does new technology enable retailers to track inventory, but to learn who’s buying what.

For more information on these and other trends, read the full article here. You can see the Euromonitor presentation on Retail and Foodservice Trends 2025 here.

Dean Landeche, Vice President of Marketing and Retail Solutions






[New E360 Webinar] Top Retailer Trends for Refrigeration, Controls and Facility Optimization

Dean Landeche_Blog Dean Landeche | Vice President of Marketing , Cold Chain
Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions

Join us for our next E360 Webinar, “Top Retailer Trends for Refrigeration, Controls and Facility Optimization” on Tuesday, March 6 at 2 p.m. EST / 11 a.m. PST.

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If there’s one certainty in today’s commercial refrigeration market, it’s that change is inevitable. For the past several years, we’ve witnessed a historic evolution — the beginning phases of a transition from legacy refrigeration strategies to those which promise improved energy efficiencies, environmental responsibility and integrated facility management capabilities.

As we move through 2018, there are very few indications that the pace of this evolution is slowing down. We continue to work with our OEM partners to develop viable equipment and system options that address these challenges, while easing concerns about lifecycle cost and maintenance requirements. From an end user perspective, the ever-expanding range of refrigeration options is forcing them to make difficult operational decisions about how their respective organizations will respond to the calls for change.

Our next E360 Webinar will look at some of the leading commercial refrigeration and retail trends in 2018 and what’s driving them. You’ll hear from some of the industry’s experts in alternate refrigeration architectures and distributed controls systems, and take part in an interactive discussion with a refrigeration engineer regarding what he’s actually seeing in the field.

Webinar attendees will learn:

  • Factors in evaluating and selecting refrigerants
  • What’s driving trends in control selections
  • How refrigerant and control selections are impacting system designs and engineering

We believe that staying informed of the latest facility management and refrigeration strategies is the best way to weather the continual change taking place in our industry. Make plans to join us Tuesday, March 6 at 2 p.m. EST / 11 a.m. PST for this informative E360 Webinar.



New Challenges Won’t Stop the Cold Chain Evolution

Dean Landeche_Blog Dean Landeche | Vice President of Marketing , Cold Chain
Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions


This post summarizes opening remarks made by John Rhodes, Emerson’s group president, cold chain, at our latest E360 event, which was held in Chicago on October 5. To learn more, watch the full video.

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The refrigeration industry is facing the most significant regulatory changes in half a century, and they’re all starting to hit now. The first new Department of Energy (DOE) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations began coming into effect a little more than a year ago. Many more — about 90 percent of the total — are scheduled to be implemented in the next three years or so.

Even as the first targets have or soon will be taking effect, the EPA’s core rule was tentatively struck down in August. The U.S. Court of Appeals DC Circuit ruled that the EPA did not have the authority to phase down HFCs under its Clean Air Act, because HFCs are not an ozone-depleting substance.

This ruling suggests HFCs such as R-404A and R-507 might get a new lease on life, but I would caution that the ruling has not yet gone into effect and may not be upheld. Presently, several refrigerant manufacturers are appealing the ruling.

Meanwhile, the industry will continue to build on the significant progress we’ve made in the last several years. We’re in mid-stride on a lot of changes and can’t afford to stop and wait. The risks of falling behind are great, especially if this ruling is appealed. Even if it stands, the global phase-down of HFCs is underway, and may make a strong business case for the changes the industry has already set in motion.

During the past three and a half years, Emerson has worked to help you understand the changes you’re facing and achieve the best possible outcomes. These unprecedented environmental, energy and food safety regulations have created a labyrinth of challenges for our customers. Through our breadth of product offerings, stewardship efforts and focus on innovation, we’re committed to helping you successfully navigate today’s cold chain complexities.

Internally, we’ve expanded our own role in safeguarding the cold chain to confront these and other big challenges, including the amount of food wasted, revenues lost and energy consumed globally. From compressors, electronics and controls to monitoring solutions and cargo tracking, we provide holistic control of cold chain operations. Our cold chain solutions ensure food quality, food-life extension and waste reduction from farm to fork.

We anticipate more complexity will continue to be added to regulations, refrigerants and applications. At the same time, a technician shortage is one of the biggest challenges facing the industry. With that in mind, we think the time is right for more standardization. In the next quarter and beyond, we intend to work toward reducing that complexity, both for total systems and subsystems. We believe “plug and play” is an approach whose time has come in the refrigeration industry.

As the refrigeration landscape evolves, our E360 initiative will continue to serve as a platform where our customers, partners and the larger industry can turn — not only for timely, straightforward information, but for a measured evaluation and expert guidance. To register for upcoming webinars, retrieve information from past presentations, and otherwise stay informed, please keep these E360 resources close at hand:

The Internet of Refrigeration

Dean Landeche_Blog Dean Landeche | V.P. of Marketing , Retail Solutions

Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions

I contributed to an article published in Condenser magazine. The focus of the piece was to analyze how networked equipment is aiming to improve safety and operations.

 The Internet of Things – an increasingly massive network of electronically connected systems, devices and people that enables cross-platform data sharing – is creating a large, connected ecosystem across many industries, including refrigeration.

woman choosing ice cream at grocery store freezer

There is continuing growth in remote monitoring with all types of refrigeration equipment, driven largely by the need to safeguard consumers and food, manage energy use, and provide a consistent, effective maintenance program.

Retail groceries have long recognized the importance of connected refrigeration systems, and have high adoption rates of connected devices. Previously, the primary focus was operating alerts and alarms to indicate problems. Now with more points of connection, more sophisticated data from embedded sensor and controllers and advanced analytics capabilities in the ‘big data’ world, the focus has changed to creating more insights that drive specific decisions and actions.

There is much more interest and use of information to prompt action in advance, based on opportunities and trends identified in data patterns rather than reacting to failure modes and alerts. Applied at the system, site and enterprise levels, those types of insight-driven actions have huge implications for cost-saving, labor productivity, maintenance improvement, food safety and more.

Through remote monitoring, equipment owners and their service providers can often detect problems, as they emerge rather than after-the-fact in an emergency breakdown. Major food safety risk and food loss is often avoided, and system operation can be maintained through proactive efforts. The adoption of remote monitoring for refrigerant leak detection is also becoming more common. Advanced data can often identify small leaks up to 30 days prior to discovery by leak detectors.

Today’s smarter systems are making it easier, faster, and highly reliable to implement equipment monitoring and performance processes.

Read the full article here.


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