Japanese manufacturer Panasonic has supplied 10 of its 80HP transcritical CO2 (R744) rack-based booster systems, 15 20HP and two 15HP CO2 outdoor condensing units (OCUs), to Japan’s largest R744-based cold storage facility in Sendai.

According to the manufacturer, the systems were installed at the 31,000m2 (333,700ft2) facility in October 2022; the site is due to open later this year following system testing, which starts in early February.

This installation is Panasonic’s third industrial CO2 project in Japan.

CO2 for Japan’s industrial market

Panasonic’s 80HP transcritical CO2 booster system has a rated capacity output of 45kW (12.8TR) and an evaporating temperature range of -45 to 0°C (-49 to 32°F).

According to the manufacturer, the system can offer simultaneous operation in low and medium temperatures with the installation of external piping.

Panasonic debuted the system at the China Refrigeration tradeshow in 2019 after it identified the need for CO2 systems in the Japanese industrial refrigeration market.

The first booster system was installed at a cold storage warehouse in Osaka, Japan, in October 2020, and the company officially started taking orders for the system in August 2021, with units being shipped out in February 2022.

Japan’s largest CO2 cold storage facility

Once operational, the seven-story building will house two tenants: a food wholesale business and a warehousing business.

The facility features different temperature zones on each floor, including a frozen area, a chilled area for refrigeration and an ambient-temperature warehouse.

In addition to Panasonic’s then transcritical CO2 booster systems and 17 condensing units, the site includes 32 CO2-based coolers (evaporators) and other HFC-based equipment.

The Japanese Society of Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (JSRAE) is hosting a tour of the facility on February 8.