Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘Thought Leadership’

Beyond Trackers and Loggers: Optimizing the Cold Chain

Juliette Giles | Senior Product Manager, Software & Services

Cold Chain at Emerson

Cold chain monitoring has come a long way in recent years, thanks to devices that provide real-time visibility into perishable shipments. It’s now possible to get key transit information at any time, from a point of origin to final destinations, keeping all stakeholders accountable while minimizing rejected loads.

Now the perishable cold chain is becoming even stronger with the introduction of Oversight cargo services: a robust suite of monitoring, data analytics, and reporting capabilities that delivers detailed information about the real-time and historic performance of your shipments. This cloud-based portal offers many new capabilities — some available at no cost — to help you boost customer loyalty, optimize shipments, preserve your peace of mind, make better-informed cold chain decisions, and protect the integrity of your brand.

Oversight cargo services includes five modules, available individually or in any combination.

Track Your Shipment

If you’re using Emerson’s field-proven line of GO real-time trackers and loggers, you’ve already received a free upgrade with the launch of Oversight cargo services. The Track Your Shipment module — available at no cost with any of these devices — allows you to provide your customers real-time, in-transit shipment and temperature data.

By adding just a few lines of code, you can display a Track Your Shipment box on your website, customized to conform to your brand. Your customers and employees can access shipment data at any time, enhancing the value you provide.

Upgrade the platform with the following paid services:

Reports and Scorecards

Trackers and loggers can provide you with reams of data; but to make the most of it, you need to get the right information to the right people at the right time. Reports and Scorecards give you access to Emerson’s temperature monitoring dashboard, enabling you to identify patterns across multiple shipments and pinpoint the sources of recurring problems — such as whether a carrier, origin or destination is failing to maintain temperature compliance.

Data Integration

High volumes of data can be overwhelming, especially if you need multiple platforms to create new shipments or are constantly being bombarded with alerts. Data Integration allows you to see the information streams that matter most — such as location and temperature alerts — in a consolidated view. This benefits your operation by eliminating duplicate work, minimizing opportunities for error, and reducing your overhead costs. You’ll also have the option to consolidate shipment creation and purchase order (PO) entry processes into one convenient system.

Managed Services

Managed Services extends your in-house resources by outsourcing some (or all) of your monitoring tasks to an experienced team of cold chain specialists. This provides continuous monitoring whenever your shipments are on the road — no matter what time of day or day of the year. You can choose to get alerts when temperature abuse or light alerts happen in transit, and/or empower the Managed Services team to take immediate action in accordance with your preferred operating procedures.

Professional and Consultative Services

Sometimes the best solution to a challenging and complex issue is to get a fresh perspective. Emerson’s Professional and Consultative Services team can perform a comprehensive on-site consultation and analysis to identify gaps in your operation. This team-oriented approach gives you access to experienced cold chain specialists who can help you to identify and solve recurring issues.

Final thoughts

The new suite of Oversight cargo services has been developed by a skilled team of cold chain experts. Several members of the development team have backgrounds in logistics and designed it specifically to address challenges they’ve faced when working for organizations like yours. We’re excited about the portal’s potential to strengthen your perishable cold chain and welcome the opportunity to demonstrate its full value.

For more details, contact us today or download the Oversight cargo services brochure.

Learn More: Oversight Cargo Services at Your Fingertips (emerson.com)

Help Reduce Energy Costs by Recovering Heat From Industrial Refrigeration Systems

Mike Nielsen | Global Application Team Leader, Vilter

Emerson’s Commercial and Residential Solution’s Business

Heat recovery from industrial refrigeration can be an effective way for facilities to help reduce power consumption and energy costs.

Depending on a system’s setup, the heat produced from a basic screw compressor refrigeration system can be used elsewhere. How it’s recovered and redirected depends on the industry and/or application. Among the most common heat recovery applications is to heat water for purposes unrelated to refrigeration such as wash-down and cleanup in a cold storage processing facility.

Not only can compressor heat recovery help to reduce the amount of energy used to heat water elsewhere in a facility, but it also can contribute to reduced water usage when a system doesn’t have to heat as much water. This is especially relevant in areas where water costs are higher. Every system and installation is different, so it’s important to evaluate whether the potential for reduced energy consumption and costs outweigh the investment in equipment to reuse compressor heat.

Integrating water systems

Under standard operation conditions, industrial refrigeration systems produce condenser heat, super-heated vapor heat, and oil heat. There are multiple ways to integrate these refrigeration systems with a typically separate water system to employ a heat recovery strategy, but some extra equipment may be needed.

The first step is to determine the facility’s hot water requirements and whether refrigeration compressor heat can be utilized in the hot water system. In both new and existing refrigeration systems, the equipment would have to be designed for this expansion.

For instance, some type of water system would be needed, as would a storage tank and a pump to bring in water. Then, the water would need to be pumped out to the heat source and returned to the hot water storage tank.

Consider full energy cost impact

Even though more heat can be generated by elevating the refrigeration system parameters, it’s important to consider how important energy recovery is to your overall operational goals.

Raising the condensing temperature can increase discharge water temperatures. As a result, more energy can go into the compressor, so it’s important to make sure the energy recovered for heating water is worthwhile. In some regions where electricity costs more than natural gas or propane, this approach may not be a good option. In other areas where electricity costs are relatively low and the cost for natural gas or propane is the same or higher than electricity, it might make sense to generate more heat with the compressor.

Many existing systems can be retrofitted to recover refrigeration compressor heat. This can be a bigger undertaking than a new system; re-piping, new equipment or a change in condenser type and heat exchangers can be required. But the investment may be worth the effort if a facility is experiencing high energy costs.

Enabling efficiency and energy savings

Recovering heat from refrigerator compressor systems to heat water for other processes can enable facilities to reduce overall energy costs. Highly efficient equipment such as Vilter™ single-screw compressors are designed to help provide lower lifecycle costs and high reliability. They also can enable facilities to reduce the energy consumed in the refrigeration system while lowering the energy needed to heat the water within those facilities.

To learn more about deploying a heat recovery strategy in your industrial refrigeration system, read our white paper.

 

 

 

The Helix: Bold Collaboration & Disruptive Innovation

RajanRajendran2 Rajan Rajendran | V.P., System Innovation Center and Sustainability

Emerson’s Commercial & Residential Solutions Business

When Emerson first opened The Helix Innovation Center, we envisioned it as a catalyst to advance research and drive innovation for the global heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR) industry.

In only a few short years, it has surpassed our best expectations, quickly becoming a place where industry experts can come together and work collaboratively to confront and solve some of the biggest challenges facing not just our industry, but our communities and the entire planet.

A perfect example of this is the work we’ve done at The Helix in regard to sustainable supermarket refrigeration. We recently introduced a new distributed scroll booster refrigeration architecture for retail operators that will help them meet their sustainability goals without introducing unnecessary serviceability complexities.

The Copeland™ scroll booster architecture helps reduce emissions from refrigeration systems by utilizing reduced charges of lower global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants and system design strategies that maximize energy efficiencies. It is designed for maximum application flexibility and optimized for use with a low-pressure refrigerant, R-513A.

This flexible architecture fills an urgent need within the food retail market, which is looking for commercially viable technology and equipment that not only delivers efficiency and simplicity, but also provides a positive impact on the environment. Until now, there has not been a single system architecture that addressed the wide range of sustainability objectives, as well as system cost and long-term serviceability considerations.

The combination of high performance, sustainability and serviceability made the distributed scroll booster an ideal choice for the Gem City Market, a new small-format supermarket that opened this April in a food desert in Dayton, Ohio.

The work being done at The Helix became a focal point for the project as Dayton community members, city officials and commercial refrigeration industry leaders came together to identify a solution that met the market’s configuration of the distributed scroll booster system that met the store’s unique footprint, floorplan and refrigeration requirements.

Special thanks to business partners Chemours and Hussmann, and my own company, Emerson, for donating expertise, resources and equipment for this important installation

This is a great example of why we built The Helix. There is no shortage of great ideas, innovative technology and dedicated commitment in the industry. Our innovation center provides an ideal place where are these elements can come together to achieve great things for our industry and our communities.

 

 

 

[New E360 Webinar] Preparing for the Safe Use of A2L Refrigerants in Commercial Refrigeration

RajanRajendran2 Rajan Rajendran | V.P., System Innovation Center and Sustainability

Emerson’s Commercial & Residential Solutions Business

The recent passing of the American Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Act is accelerating the phasedown of hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerants and renewing the search for viable refrigerant alternatives, including those classified as A2L (mildly flammable) and A3 (highly flammable). But while A2Ls are among the leading alternatives capable of achieving regulatory requirements, the safety standards governing their use in the U.S. have yet to be finalized. Our next E360 Webinar — which will take place on Thursday, May 27 at 10 a.m. ET/7 a.m. PT — will feature a panel discussion about how A2Ls have been successfully deployed in regions where they have already been approved.

Around the globe, the phasedown of HFC refrigerants is prompting a transition toward alternatives with lower global warming potential (GWP). While A2Ls and A3 have been approved for use in Europe and are now widely adopted in commercial refrigeration applications there, the development of safety standards is ongoing within the U.S.

Currently, several industry working groups are evaluating A2Ls and A3s in equipment and field applications, including UL 60335-2-89 (the equipment standard based on IEC 60335-2-89) and ASHRAE-15 (the application standard updated for commercial refrigeration based on ISO 5149) — both of which are approaching the final phases of approval.

Our upcoming E360 Webinar will explore one European retailer’s sustainability journey from HFCs to low-GWP A2L refrigerants. As part two of the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute’s (AHRI) webinar series, How to Not Only Survive, but “Win” the Refrigeration Industry HFC Phasedown, this webinar will provide an opportunity for the U.S. to learn from their experience and prepare for a future with A2L refrigerants.

The webinar will include the following experts and practitioners:

  • Helen Walter-Terrinoni of AHRI
  • Lauren MacGowens of AHRI
  • Tim Anderson of Hussmann Corporation
  • Stephen Spletzer of The Chemours Company
  • Brian Churchyard of ASDA (a European retailer)

Attendees will learn about the key points of the European retailer’s journey:

  • Defining sustainability goals and objectives — and meeting them
  • Transitioning from A1s (HFCs) to A2Ls
  • Applying A2L systems in a safe and effective way
  • Understanding the impacts on store and equipment design, training and maintenance
  • Imparting lessons learned along the way

To learn more about the status of U.S. safety standards and how to use A2L refrigerants safely and effectively in retail applications, register for this informative webinar.

 

Mitigate Food Safety Risks to Protect Your Reputation and Bottom Line

Doug Thurston | Vice President of Sales, Cargo Solutions

Emerson’s Commercial and Residential Solutions Business

For suppliers of fresh and/or frozen perishable foods, protecting their brand reputation is a top priority. Retailers rely on producers to stock their frozen aisles and perishable sections with the consistently high-quality product that keeps consumers coming back. Many consumers know their favorite brands by name, and when given a choice, will select these brands over other suppliers. This hard-earned loyalty has taken years to develop and must be protected at all costs. If you’re a producer, this means that consistently delivering the safest, freshest foods possible is a fundamental tenet to your success.

Keeping perishable products free from contamination and at the proper temperatures throughout every phase of the cold chain journey is critical to maintaining food safety and maximizing its quality. Over the past several years, when highly publicized incidents of foodborne illness have been reported, produce was often identified as a primary source of contamination. In fact, industry reports estimate that most foodborne illness outbreaks can be attributed to produce.

What’s at stake for producers?

While human costs are incalculable, the financial costs of food recalls and foodborne illness outbreaks have far-reaching impacts to growers and their retail partners. According to a recent food industry study, a publicized outbreak of foodborne illness can tarnish a producer’s reputation severely, lead to significant sales losses, and increase the risks of legal, financial and regulatory fines and penalties. And while reputational impacts are also difficult to quantify, consumer sentiments from this study were clear:

  • 44% will avoid the brand for a few months after an outbreak.
  • 20% will never return/use the brand again.
  • 16% will switch to a competitor’s brand.
  • 20% will return once the issue is resolved.

Retail partners may be even less forgiving and seek an alternative provider to mitigate future risks to their customers and operations.

How can you protect your brand?

As a key link in the world’s perishable food supply chain, producers need every tool and technology at their disposal to maximize produce quality and safety. Achieving cold chain safety is a process that starts from the point of harvest and continues through processing, in-transit shipping and cold storage — all before final delivery to grocers and restaurants. To reduce the risks of spoilage or contamination, producers need quality control programs that focus on temperature management and proper handling procedures.

Temperature management. Maintaining precise temperatures is essential for proper cold chain management and to prevent the growth of bacteria from temperature variations in a shipping container. Emerson provides GO real-time trackers and loggers as well as a robust technological infrastructure to:

  • Enable in-transit temperature monitoring
  • Provide visibility to shipper locations
  • Capture historical trip data
  • Support producers’ quality control initiatives
  • Help ensure temperatures are kept at the required setpoints

Proper handling procedures. Improper handling procedures are key contributing factors to foodborne illness within the perishable cold chain. Producers must guard against every opportunity for contaminants to be introduced during each step of the harvest and shipping processes. Key contributing factors include:

  • Cross-contamination in shipping, handling and storage procedures
  • Poor employee hygiene
  • Potential spread of bacterial pathogens that cause food poisoning

Taking a proactive approach to regulatory compliance and food safety

In addition to the financial and reputational risks of a food recall or foodborne illness outbreak, ensuring compliance with food safety regulations is more critical now than ever. The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) of 2011 has ushered in a new era of food safety and shifted the focus from reactive responses toward more proactive measures — a philosophy that many leading producers are also adopting as a best practice.

To implement this approach, suppliers must have the tools to maintain visibility into how their food is handled and stored at every step of the cold chain — which potentially can have as many as 30 changes of custody — and automate the recording and management of this data for reporting purposes.

Emerson is committed to helping producers protect their customers, their reputations and their profits. Our advanced GO real-time trackers and GO loggers — combined with our Oversight software portal — are providing visibility to in-transit perishable shipments to help producers and cold chain stakeholders implement their food safety initiatives. View our food safety infographic to learn more.

 

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: