When it comes to reducing fuel consumption in transport refrigeration, the British food logistics specialist Martin Brower UK comes up with impressive results. Thanks to the use of electric driven FRIGOBLOCK refrigeration units, the company has saved almost 1.9 million litres of gasoil in just 6 years.
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With a smile, Tony Winterbottom presents the fuel consumption statistics of the Martin Brower/UK fleet at the Hemel Hempstead DC. The General Manager Operational Support of the logistics company specializing in the delivery of fast-food restaurants has every reason to be happy: "Since 2011, we have reduced the consumption of gasoil by almost 1.9 million litres in our Hemel fleet – despite the fact that we saw an increase in the volume of cases delivered in the same period of approximately 6% annually." Gasoil, also known as red diesel, is tax-reduced diesel that is used for the operation of stationary engines and engines in working machines, including the diesel engines of conventional refrigeration machines on trucks and trailers.
Due to its constantly increasing transport volumes, the company had predicted an equally steady increase in gasoil consumption at the Hemel DC for refrigeration in 2010 to a total of more than 807,000 litres in 2016. However, the actual gasoil consumption of the Hemel fleet dropped continuously to only 221,133 litres in 2016. Winterbottom is aware of the key cause for this positive development: "Since 2011, we have equipped more and more vehicles with FRIGOBLOCK refrigeration units.”
Unlike conventional transport refrigeration machines, FRIGOBLOCK refrigerators have an electric drive. The electrical energy is supplied by an alternator directly driven by the vehicle engine. This eliminates the need for a separate diesel engine for the refrigeration machine and consequently also for its additional fuel consumption. "With every additional vehicle, we equip with FRIGOBLOCK refrigeration machines, the gasoil consumption in our fleet is declining," confirms Tony Winterbottom.
According to Winterbottom, the fact that the truck engine requires a little more fuel for the drive of the alternator is negligible in the Martin Brower fleet: "Whilst there is undoubtedly a small reduction in KPL performance we were able to largely compensate any additional consumption by the FRIGOBLOCK refrigeration units by acquiring more economical Euro-6 vehicles, focusing on aerodynamic measures and driver training.” According to his calculations, there is a saving of more than 1 million GBP in gasoil costs over the past six years.
Not only based on economic considerations, Martin Brower UK trusts FRIGOBLOCK's electric driven refrigeration machines: The reduction of CO2 emissions is a strong argument as well. In 2010, the company launched a program aimed at reducing the reliance on fossil fuels in total energy consumption to less than 20% by 2020 at the latest. “Right from the start, FRIGOBLOCK was part of our strategy to improve our carbon footprint", explains Winterbottom. The success shows that he is right: Since 2010, the company fleet has emitted nearly six million kilograms less CO2 than originally predicted from the reduction in gasoil use. In addition, modern Euro 6 truck engines are also significantly lower in emissions of other air pollutants than the diesel drives for refrigeration machines, which are approved for less stringent exhaust gas standards.
An additional environmental aspect is considered by Martin Brower’s fleet as well, as Tony Winterbottom explains. “Our trucks drive exclusively on biodiesel from used cooking oil, which we collect in the restaurants of our customer McDonald's. Thanks to the combination of FRIGOBLOCK refrigeration machines and the use of biofuel for our trucks, we are now able to achieve our goal of obtaining 80% of our energy from renewable energy sources potentially 2 years ahead of schedule.” says Tony Winterbottom. This fact in addition to the noticeably lower costs for gasoil for the operation of the refrigeration machines are extremely convincing arguments. Therefore, in 2017, Martin Brower UK is going to equip the remainder of the 29 rigid trucks at the Hemel Hempstead depot with FRIGOBLOCK refrigeration units.
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