24 June 2019

Star's Ethos helps chilled storage firm save thousands

Shortlisted for the TCS&D Awards for Partnership of the Year, The Ice Co Storage & Logistics and Star Technical Solutions teamed up to install energy management software, Ethos, at the distribution centre’s refrigeration plant in Wakefield, with significant results.

The Ethos sensor panel can be retrofitted to any refrigeration plant.

The Ice Co Storage & Logistics temperature controlled distribution centre in Wakefield has taken advantage of ground breaking technology from Star Technical Solutions to reduce its carbon footprint and annual energy spend.

Ethos performance optimisation and energy management remotely monitors and analyses data from refrigeration plants and makes recommendations to help it become more energy efficient. With the advice and insights provided by Ethos, the distribution centre was able to condense its carbon emissions substantially by 310 tonnes of CO2 per year, and has saved over £100,000 annually on energy bills.

Malcolm Dufton, The Ice Co Group property and energy director, said: “We knew there were savings to be had but Ethos has allowed us to identify where those savings could be made and how. The result is over £100,000 saving per annum on electricity, so now we are going to incorporate more plant into the network and roll out the program to our other plants and cold stores.”

The energy management and optimisation consultancy led service helped The Ice Co understand energy consumption of different sections of its plant, alter plant settings to optimise that consumption, and look out for and anticipate plant maintenance issues.

Ethos proposed immediate changes to the maintenance regime, including changes to condenser fan sequencing and fan control which required no capital investment, along with providing savings of £68,000 from corrective actions such as replacing an inefficient compressor.

The new system quickly identified that changes to condenser fan sequencing, condenser fan control, low-stage compressor sequencing and system purging would contribute to a cumulative energy saving of around 14 percent.

Ethos allows both Star consultants and clients continuous access to an online dashboard with an overview of the plant’s performance. With built-in 4G connectivity, there is no requirement for the system to be connected to the existing IT network, therefore decreasing the workload involved in the installation.

Anne Flanagan, business development manager at Star Technical Solutions, said: “Ethos was designed and developed by STS to identify inefficient operation and help customers save money – which has been the extraordinary outcome for The Ice Co. The system gives an unparalleled level of visibility, analytics and insight to recommend energy saving actions, identify and visualise plant issues as they arise to avoid costly, unplanned maintenance visits as well as accurately assess spare capacity of refrigeration plant and load requirements to help in the specification of new plant.

“Ethos is like a digital commissioning engineer that is watching over the customer’s refrigeration equipment night and day so that energy inefficiencies can be highlighted and avoided through early intervention to rectify poor system performance.”

For a national company which exports temperature controlled products, the potential for company wide energy-related savings using Ethos is huge. By closely monitoring system performance, The Ice Co Storage & Logistics has been able to make modifications – most at minimal or no cost – to reduce overall annual energy consumption.

Recognising the potential savings, the Ethos installation at the Wakefield site has led to a roll out of the energy management system across all of the company’s cold storage as well as ice manufacturing facilities UK-wide.

Star Technical Solutions, the consultancy arm of Star Refrigeration, will be sharing details of the project at the TCS&D Show taking place on 25-26 June in Peterborough at the East of England Arena. 

In addition to sponsoring World Refrigeration Day, Star will be exhibiting at stand B24 and speaking to delegates, sharing industry knowledge with two CPD-certified presentations as part of the conference programme.


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