After successfully deploying its first transcritical system at a Pick ‘n Save store in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, in 2014, Roundy’s installed a second transcritical system at a Mariano’s store in Orland Park, Illinois, in January 2016.
A third quickly followed at a Metro Market store in Shorewood, Wisconsin, in February, and two more were installed at Mariano’s stores in Westmont, Illinois, and Naperville, Illinois, in March and May respectively.
Roundy’s will open one transcritical store in August and one in September, both in Chicago. Next year, the chain plans to open five Mariano’s with transcritical systems in the Chicago area. The systems are all Hillphoenix Advansor units.
As a member of the EPA’s GreenChill partnership, Roundy’s has “pledged to install transcritical CO2 refrigeration system at all new stores and remodels where the refrigeration system is being replaced,” said James Hyland, vice-president of corporate communications & public affairs for Milwaukee-based Roundy’s, during a food retail panel discussion at ATMOsphere America last month in Chicago.
Roundy’s merged with Kroger last December.
‘Transcritical is worth it’
Roundy’s Menomonee Falls store – which was found to consume 20% less energy than the Roundy’s prototype system during the first six months of operation – has “performed flawlessly” since its installation, said Hyland.
On an annual basis, the store saves $13,000 in energy costs over a comparable HFC system, he said, adding that based on the EPA’s greenhouse gas equivalence calculator the system delivers an annual reduction of 33.6 metric tons of greenhouse gas, the equivalent of not burning 36,000 pounds of coal.
Hyland pointed out that CO2 has a high level of heat rejection, “making it ideal for heat reclamation applications and efficient hot-gas defrosting”. He acknowledged that many CO2 systems require steel piping throughout and “carry a higher risk of pressure-related system breakdowns”.
However, he added that the Advansor system eliminates those concerns by “perfecting the use of pressure-reducing valves so that everything inside of the store operates under lower pressure, as it would with an HFC-based system”.
“Transcritical is worth it. It really is worth it,” he said.
To read more coverage of ATMOsphere America 2016, please click here.