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Digital Compression Improves Energy Efficiency for Convenience Store Chain

Sept. 7, 2022
This refrigeration system was given a one-year field test for walk-in and display case coolers and freezers.


Operational efficiency of refrigeration systems is a major concern for convenience store chains, especially when it comes to reducing energy consumption and limiting downtime due to equipment failures. A major convenience store chain operates four separate walk-in coolers, each powered by an individual refrigeration condensing unit. The smaller condensing units cycle frequently on and off to maintain temperatures. It was determined that a larger, modulating condensing unit
would be capable of handling the load of several smaller condensing units and precisely maintain temperatures in each walk-in. A one-year field test was proposed to compare identical sites.


Precise temperature control and significant energy savings are now available with the Copeland digital outdoor refrigeration unit, X-Line Series. Sources report that the digital X-Line delivers superior cooling and energy efficiency for walk-in coolers and remote display cases — helping owners and operators to manage refrigeration and food safety needs. The contractor of choice installed two, five-horsepower units that can each modulate down to 20 percent capacity and precisely match the refrigeration load in all four coolers.

Digital modulation enables owners to maintain much more precise setting and tight control of temperatures. This helps operators to minimize temperature deviations in refrigeration fixtures so that food is kept safe and at maximum
quality. The digital X-Line combines compression technology with variable speed fan motor control, large-capacity condenser coils, and smart protection and diagnostics to meet today’s challenging refrigeration requirements.

Sources from Emerson Copeland report the digital X-line unit will save the test store an estimated 27 percent annually in electricity compared to legacy units. Built-in compressor electronics technology allows operators to take action to minimize product loss from equipment downtime. Errors can be quickly communicated to service technicians, and the system can make changes to protect against faults that might otherwise cause a compressor failure. Operators can expect improved reliability, an extended compressor lifespan and greatly reduced lifecycle costs, sources report.

The slim profile, lightweight design and wall-mount option of the Copeland digital outdoor refrigeration unit, X-Line Series give operators flexibility to install the units, even in locations with significant space constraints. In fact, digital X-Line units are so unobtrusive they are often mistaken for AC mini-split units. This helps operators to lower installation costs, eliminate the need for costly crane rentals, and avoid expensive system design workarounds and/or relocation issues. The digital X-Line can even be applied to systems featuring multiple evaporators.

Operators located near residential areas or noise-restricted zones benefit from using the quietest standard unit available. Under most expected operating conditions, the units produce less sound than a normal conversation. In most applications, noise from the digital X-Line Series is practically undetectable. The units are discrete and allow more mounting options where the sound produced by traditional units might prevent their use, such as customer-facing locations near entryways, patios or even indoors.

For more about the X-Line Series, visit THIS LINK.

Diagnostic Features

Onboard diagnostics provide connectivity to facility management control systems, including Emerson's Site Supervisor suite of control products) to alert owner/operators of faults and key performance indicators: over-current protection; incorrect phase detection; high-pressure lockout; flood-back prediction; Demand Cooling; flooded start protection ("bump-start" logic) and more.