HFC refrigerants are experiencing a phase-out in a variety of markets across the globe due to their high global warming potential (GWP). This forces OEMs to build forward thinking business strategies when selecting a replacement refrigerant for use in their equipment.
The catch with synthetic refrigerants in ice machines is to find the perfect balance between something that will work well in the application and be available for purchase for the foreseeable future. Finding this balance has been Vogt’s focus.
Vogt’s long-term refrigerant solution is to use HFO blends that are similar in properties to R134a. These hydroflouroolefin-based refrigerants have very low GWPs that are in line with the EU F-Gas Regulation phase-down and with projected refrigerant regulations in the United States.
In November 2017 at the IPIA, Vogt introduced the HFO10. This is the first Tube-Ice machine designed to run on an HFO blend (R513A). This blend, along with other R134a-like HFO blends, are expected to be long term synthetic refrigerant solutions, but are likely to evolve to find themselves replaced by pure HFO refrigerants of the R1234 family. This family of pure HFOs will be retrofittable to the HFO10, giving it a secure and well-defined future as the market evolves.
In addition to environmental benefits, the HFO10 operates at lower head pressures (approx. 130 psi), putting less overall stress on the system. Vogt utilizes Bitzer’s innovative CSH semi-hermetic compact screw compressor – a robust design that is more reliable than a reciprocating compressor. A further benefit of the CSH is that it is quieter when operating than the equivalent reciprocating design. Energy efficiency remains excellent with the machine consuming as little as 2.68 KWH per 100 lbs of ice produced.
The HFO10 is just the beginning of Vogt’s new focus to innovate and to introduce superior products to the marketplace.