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Solar-powered cooling solution for off-grid applications – pv magazine International


Phasun and Photo voltaic Cooling Engineering have developed a PV-powered chilly room for small farmers in Africa. The answer, put in on a farm in Kenya, features a 2.8 kW photo voltaic array and a vapor compression warmth pump.

Phasun and German startup Photo voltaic Cooling Engineering have collectively developed the SelfChill chilly room, a solar-powered cooling answer for off-grid functions.

“The expertise relies on high-quality energy-efficient core elements, however can be utilized in a modular approach,” Germany-based photo voltaic Phasun mentioned in a press release. “Completely different methods may be configured and constructed utilizing the identical fundamental elements and different constructing supplies [available locally] equivalent to piping, insulation, and pumps: from small fridges to giant milk cooling tanks and cooling containers.”

The businesses have put in 25 cooling methods in six African nations. A SelfChill system with 20 m3 quantity was put in on a basil and mint farm within the Kenyan village of Thika in 2021. The farmers saved the vegetation in a chilly room at a temperature of 4 C till the harvest was taken on the market.

“SelfChill cooling models encompass DC-powered vapor compression warmth pumps that generate chilly,” mentioned Geraldine Quelle, Phasun’s challenge supervisor, pv journal, including that the warmth pumps have a COP of two and are powered by a 2.8 kW photo voltaic array. “The chilly is then saved in a water tub (thermal storage), and transferred by way of a water-air warmth exchanger.”

The system participated within the Off-Grid Chilly Chain Problem of the World Leap Initiative, the place the technical efficiency of 12 chilly rooms put in within the tropics and subtropics was examined within the subject for six months. It was reported that it confirmed the perfect and most dependable efficiency within the competitors and was named “Prime Winner of the World Leap Award.”

“The chilly room in Thika has been in steady use for 18 months and has introduced nice advantages to native farmers,” mentioned Phasun engineer Florian Martini. “Prior to now, that they had lots of post-harvest losses as a result of the transportation of the vegetation was usually delayed, and components of the harvest had been broken. Now they retailer the crops within the chilly room for as much as 4 days earlier than assortment. .”

The World Leap Initiative, sponsored amongst others by the World Financial institution and the IKEA Basis, goals to encourage market transformation in direction of the perfect, best off-grid vitality service applied sciences by way of packages of Awards.

A neighborhood employee and SelfChill for cooling basil at a farm in Thika, Kenya

Picture: Phasun

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