ARBS 2018 Industry Awards – winners announced

ARBS 2018, Australia’s only international air conditioning, refrigeration and building services trade exhibition, last night announced the ARBS Industry Awards winners for 2018 at a gala dinner hosted by media personality Tony Squires, held at ICC Grand Ballroom in Sydney.

The awards are now firmly entrenched in the HVAC&R and building services industry and attracted nominees from across all sectors. A panel of industry experts evaluated the nominations based on various criteria such as leadership, sustainability, performance and innovation. The award winners are:

The ARBS Young Achiever Award 2018:

–             Jason Harrison – Airmaster Australia

The ARBS Product Excellence Award 2018:

–             ACDHUM-LD – Air Change

The ARBS Project Excellence Award 2018:

–             F Mayer Refrigerated cold storage/distribution centre – Strathbrook Industrial Services & Danfoss Australia

The ARBS Outstanding Industry Education/Training Award 2018:

–             Mobile CO2 Training Unit – Danfoss (Australia) Pty Ltd

The ARBS Software/Digital Excellence Award 2018:

–             Clarity – HydroChem

The ARBS Outstanding Service & Maintenance Award 2018:

–             A.G. Coombs Group Pty Ltd

The ARBS Hall of Fame 2018 (all nominations receive the award):

–             Stephen Gilchrist – CIBSE ANZ

–             John Bosci – AIRAH

–             Mark Padwick – AREMA

–             David Seedsman – AMCA

–             Warren Cole – RACCA


ARBS 2018 off to a solid start

ARBS 2018, the air conditioning, refrigeration and building services exhibition, hit the ground running in Sydney yesterday.

Over 300 exhibitors have assembled at the ICC Exhibition Centre in Darling Harbour for this year’s event and in excess of 9,000 visitors are expected to walk through the doors.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Air-Conditioning Australia (MHIAA) is one of the exhibitors at ARBS 2018. Among other things, the company is showcasing its Q-ton – an air-to-water hot water solution which utilises CO2 gas as a refrigerant.

Suitable for use by food processors, distillers and other manufacturers, the Q-ton (pictured) addresses two of the biggest issues facing manufacturers, namely energy costs and sustainability.

Given that food and beverage manufacturers use hot water for everything from plant washdowns to pasteurisation, they need an affordable and reliable hot water supply. According to MHIAA the Q-ton is often a wise solution to this need.

Apart from the exhibitors, ARBS 2018 also features an extensive speaker series as well as the Awards Gala Presentation Dinner which take place tonight at the International Convention Centre Ballroom, Darling Harbour.

The categories being contested include:

  • ARBS Young Achiever Award
  • ARBS Project Excellence Award
  • ARBS Product Excellence Award
  • ARBS Software/Digital Excellence Award
  • ARBS Outstanding Industry Education/Training Award
  • ARBS Outstanding Service & Maintenance Award
  • ARBS Hall of Fame 2018

ARBS 2018 concludes tomorrow (May 10) at 4pm.

Australian Refrigeration Association appoints new boss

The Australian Refrigeration Association (ARA) has named Ian Tuena as its new President, effective immediately.

Tuena takes over from outgoing President Tim Edwards, who had been in this role for five years. He will be supported by a revitalised Board.

In a statement, Tuena assured industry stakeholders that the ARA Board is committed to increasing the effectiveness the association.

“You know there is enormous potential for improvement in HVACR services in Australia.  We understand that we need for far greater participation by industry stakeholders in delivering the cost savings and emissions reduction made possible by natural refrigerant based technology. It is a challenge we are asking you to contribute to,” he said.

Tuena pointed to the words of Edwards: “The amendments to the Montreal Protocol call for global adoption of high efficiency, low emissions HVACR technology. Australia has the ability and need to lead this opportunity in the national interest…Now.”

Tuena added, “The simple fact is that natural refrigerant based technology has the potential to reduce the cost of HVACR services dramatically.  There is no longer a reason to delay.”

Image: Youtube

Thermal imagers for HVAC professionals

Testo has introduced an updated line of thermal imagers designed to simplify work for HVAC professionals.

The new thermal imagers, the 865, 868, 871 and 872, are full-featured devices designed to assist users with preventative maintenance of HVAC systems through early detection of problems, as well as identification of structural defects in buildings that could compromise system performance.

Preventative maintenance of HVAC systems

HVAC technicians are tasked with identifying potential issues in heating and cooling systems before they can evolve into serious concerns. Early detection of defects or damage will not only save money on maintenance down the line, but will also ensure the system is safe for the customer.

Testo’s thermal imagers can easily detect hotspots or critical heat conditions in the system that will eventually cause problems. Hotspots usually occur in the electrical components of the HVAC system or in the engine’s shafts and bearings that drive it; identifying these hotspots quickly enables technicians to address the problem before damage is caused.

Mould growth due to the formation of condensation inside the machinery, is another common issue that can affect the performance of HVAC systems. This will not only damage the inner workings of a unit, but can also present serious health risks. Testo’s thermal imagers can calculate the surface moisture value for measuring points, allowing users to pre-emptively identify mould growth before it actually manifests itself.

Structural defects

The performance of HVAC systems can be impacted by structural defects in a building, which can potentially cause heat loss, excess humidity and lack of air tightness. Testo’s thermal imagers can help identify such defects by revealing the sources, indicating faults with thermal insulation or construction.

Even if these issues do not warrant any major repairs or construction work, the seemingly minor faults can have an impact on the energy efficiency of the building, especially affecting heating and air conditioning systems. Early detection of such problems can halt further damage in its tracks, and ensure the structure isn’t suffering from poor insulation.



Efficient solutions for fresh produce cooling

When Lindsay Fresh Logistics approached Bruce Townsend, a Director of Cool Dynamics (QLD), about updating their primary distribution warehouse at the Brisbane Markets, he got Bitzer involved.

Lindsay Fresh Logistics needed to update their refrigeration at the Brisbane Markets to handle increased product throughput, different operating conditions and deliver improved operating efficiency.

The Brisbane Markets site had performed reliably over the last twenty years using Bitzer open drive screw racks, Buffalo Trident LDV condensers and Thermfresh air handlers, however this system no longer suited the proposed operating requirements. It also utilised an operating charge in excess of 2,000kg of R22, contained in just three systems, and was going to become dramatically more expensive to keep operational in the future.

As the site needed to keep operating while the plant was upgraded, the idea of swapping the open drive screw racks with semi hermetic screw racks with the central plant operating on R134a was eventually dismissed.

Thinking outside of the box and following on-site discussions between Lindsay Fresh Logistics, Cool Dynamics (QLD) and Bitzer, it was decided that each room would have its own dedicated small charge system which would allow for the other rooms to continue operating on the existing plant as each new system was installed and commissioned.

For efficiency the site went with four Bitzer Commech screw sets, two semi hermetic racks with Varispeed lead compressors, two Varispeed basic units, and a semi-hermetic basic unit.

All were selected to operate on R134a and combined with Buffalo FMC condensers featuring EC fans. These were mounted remotely on a condenser platform engineered and installed by SBP Australia on the warehouse roof and designed to ensure optimal condensing temperatures could be easily maintained regardless of ambient temperature.

New Buffalo BBM series evaporators, which are designed for optimal humidity and air flow, replaced the existing Thermfresh air handlers. All of the Bitzer compressor sets were supplied pre-wired with Carel control systems which were then connected via BACnet to a custom Innotech BMS system to allow for remote communication.

The project was completed over six months with the majority of the work, including the infilled cool room panel by SBP Australia, completed in November.

Lindsay Fresh Logistics were pleased to share their first power bill for December with Cool Dynamics (QLD). It revealed a 29 per cent power saving compared to the previous December period.

As the last of the new equipment was commissioned and the old plant decommissioned the power savings continued to improve. March showed a 37 per cent decrease from the previous corresponding period even with building additions of

three fumigation rooms, one DAF (Department of Agriculture & Fisheries) conditioned facility and three fast cooler rooms.

In February there was a slight anomaly (with temperatures an average of three degrees warmer than in February 2015), so power saving dropped from 37 per cent to 22 per cent, however the new equipment cruised through the heat providing optimal COP efficiency.

“The equipment changeover
took place with minimal disruption to our operation due to the
great communication from Cool Dynamics (QLD) during all stages
of this project,” said Bob McMillan, General Manager of Rocklea Markets site.

“This allowed us to plan for the shutdown of rooms based on product flow so that Cool Dynamics (QLD) could ensure that they had the rooms we needed operating when we required them.

“We have since noticed a considerable drop off in power consumption even though we have added rooms, plus our water consumption would have also decreased with the removal of the Thermfresh units.”

Lindsay Transport Adelaide refrigeration upgrade was also very successful and 2016 is looking to
be a great year for Lindsay Fresh Logistics, in the Brisbane Markets, with the additional cold storage to handle their export market growth, plus an estimated average 32 per cent power saving and continued to be fully supported by Cool Dynamics (QLD) and Bitzer Australia.



Cool solution cuts the angel’s share in barrel halls

A barrel hall cooling system designed to efficiently maintain ideal temperatures and raise humidity is robbing the wine gods of the ‘angel’s share’.

South Australian air conditioning manufacturer Seeley International is enjoying global success with its Climate Wizard Supercool systems, which have been specifically designed for the wine industry.

So far the Adelaide-based company has installed about a dozen systems in wineries across Australia, the United States and South Africa.

General Manager of Commercial Sales, Michael Hamilton, said the key features of the systems were their indirect and direct evaporative sections that allowed desired storage temperatures of 16°C – 18°C to be achieved while increasing air moisture to 60 – 80 per cent relative humidity.

He said the Climate Wizard was also up to 80 per cent cheaper to run than equivalent refrigerated cooling systems. The systems are aimed at New World wineries that store their barrels in sheds and warehouses rather than underground cellars.

“When we looked at where we wanted to take this winery campaign in our global market we’ve considered this product in the American and South African markets but not so much in Europe because a lot of barrel halls are underground there and they maintain pretty consistent temperatures without a lot of assistance,” said Hamilton.

“We’re finding that when we go and talk to some of these wineries and survey their sites, the barrels at the top of the wine hall can reach up to 32°C during our summer period.

“We’re creating interest with this technology because we are able to create the conditions the winemakers are looking for at a very low operating cost.”

The ‘angel’s share’ is a winemaking term that refers to the amount of wine that evaporates out of a barrel, potentially affecting quality and forcing barrels to be “topped up” during maturation.

The angel’s share is generally higher when barrel room temperatures exceed 18°C and when humidity is low. Hamilton said Seeley was looking to ramp up production of the Supercool units at its South Australian factory on the back of a flood of inquiries received at last month’s Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference in Adelaide.

“Ultimately, if they reduce that angel’s share effect, which means they don’t have to top up as much, they would be aiming to deliver a higher quality of wine and more volume,” said Hamilton.

Australia’s largest air conditioning manufacturer, Seeley is a global leader in the design and manufacture of portable and ducted climate control systems for the domestic, commercial and industrial markets.

This article was printed with permission from The Lead.

Smart tools for HVAC professionals

Testo’s set of eight Smart Probes is capable of connecting to mobile devices via Bluetooth and is ideal for HVAC specialists of all levels.

Users control these Smart Probes with the Smart Probe App, an easy-to-use mobile interface that accommodates the professionals on the go. HVAC professionals can connect to the set of instruments wirelessly through smartphones or tablets using the Smart Probe App.

The set consists of a hot wire anemometer, vane anemometer, differential pressure meter, high pressure meter, clamp thermometer, thermohygrometer, infrared thermometer and thermometer. 

Using the capabilities of Testo’s new range of Smart Probes and the Smart Probe App, the user can monitor measurements data from up to six of the instruments simultaneously. The App can also visualise measurement value changes as a graph or table. 

Connections with the Smart Probes can be maintained at distances of up to 20 metres and measured value reports such as PDFs or Excel files can be sent via email.

The App includes application-specific features such as menus for pressure-drop testing, which enables professionals to create volume flow measurement parameters at outlet and duct cross-sections.

The Smart Probes come in a secure and convenient compact case. Its durable, flexible shell and the soft foam rubber inlay interior keeps the instruments well protected for HVAC specialists working on-site.

Huge fans for food & beverage makers

Big Ass Fans has launched Essence, a new fan in Australia that’s a bit different from the traditional, enormous industrial fans the company is named for. 

Ranging from 2.4 to 4.2m in diameter, the fans are designed to provide quiet, comforting air movement more suitable for commercial spaces such as food/beverage areas, offices and lobbies, and sound-sensitive environments. 

When designing the new fan, the company said its engineers started by identifying shortcomings of existing fans and then replaced the traditional, geared ceiling fan motor with a maintenance-free, permanent magnet drive. 

The motor features multiple microprocessors that monitor room conditions, like temperature power use and so on, in order to ensure lasting performance.
In air conditioned spaces, the fan’s breeze is said to reduce reliance on expensive, energy-intensive air conditioning. In the summer, the fan’s breeze can create up to a 5.5°C cooling effect, so building managers can raise thermostat setpoints to reduce air conditioning usage by up to 30 per cent.

During colder months, the fan can be slowed to gently push warm air trapped at the ceiling down to occupant level, lowering heater usage. Additionally, the fan is damp rated so it can be used indoors or out, serving as an energy-efficient alternative in spaces where air conditioning is impractical.