New England Produce Center Switches To Carrier Transicold Reefer Units

Emissions-free solution to eliminate nearly a half-million gallons of diesel fuel annually.

Chelsea, MA: The air around the nation’s second largest produce market, the New England Produce Center in Chelsea, is about to get cleaner thanks to the installation of 79 Carrier Transicold Vector 5100 all-electric trailer refrigeration units, which will replace diesel-powered units that previously ran 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Carrier Transicold is a part of Carrier Corp., a business unit of United Technologies Corp.

The project is supported in part through a $1.9 million grant to the Chelsea Collaborative from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act’s (ARRA) National Clean Diesel Funding Assistance Program. Vector 5100 units, one of which was showcased at the event, provide emissions-free, quiet operation for on-site food storage compared to the conventional diesel-powered units that the market is currently using.

For the New England Produce Center, the use of Vector 5100 units is expected to remove more than 300 tons of air pollutants annually, helping to improve the air in this densely populated suburb already crisscrossed with diesel corridors due to trucking, shipping and airport traffic.

Chelsea, located along the Mystic River across from Boston, has been identified as the third most environmentally overburdened city in Massachusetts, with some of the state’s highest reported incidences of respiratory ailments, cardiovascular disease, strokes and cancers related to diesel engine exhaust pollution.

The Vector 5100 units are also expected to help eliminate the annual consumption of more than 480,000 gallons of diesel fuel, helping to save the produce market approximately $500,000 a year because the cost of operating trailer refrigeration units using the electric power grid, with its relatively stable pricing, is more economical than using diesel fuel.

Requiring only a 460-volt electrical power supply, the Vector 5100 unit was introduced this summer by Carrier Transicold to provide an environmentally responsive and energy-efficient solution for food distribution operations that use refrigerated trailers for on-site cold storage.

The greatest benefit is the ability to power the units with the electrical grid, rather than using a diesel engine that is normally required for conventional over-the-highway trailer refrigeration units.

As an all-electric refrigeration system, the Vector 5100 has fewer moving parts compared to conventional diesel engine powered mechanical units, resulting in benefits such as quieter operation and reduced maintenance and associated operational downtime, all of which contribute to minimizing the cost to the produce center for keeping the air cleaner for years to come.

“We applaud the Chelsea Collaborative and the New England Produce Center for taking advantage of ARRA stimulus funds to retrofit the all-electric Vector 5100 system for stationary trailer refrigeration,” says John Mandyck, Carrier’s vice president for sustainability and environmental strategies. “This is a perfect example of public-private cooperation to help our customers improve the environment in which they operate.”

Anticipated completion of the electrical infrastructure to accommodate the Vector 5100 units is mid-September, with installation and delivery of Vector 5100 units by Carrier Transicold to follow.