Vector trailer refrigeration marks decade of innovation

Vector trailer refrigeration marks decade of innovation

Carrier Transicold celebrated the 10th anniversary of the debut of its hybrid diesel-electric Vector trailer refrigeration platform in North America at the 2016 Mid-America Trucking Show (MATS) recently.

By coupling a high-performance generator to a diesel engine for the sole purpose of powering an all-electric refrigeration system, the Vector platform streamlined traditional architecture of transport refrigeration units (TRU). Its hybrid diesel-electric technology eliminated many mechanical components used in conventional systems, resulting in reliable refrigeration performance with reduced maintenance needs.

“After all these years, the Vector platform continues to remain unique among TRU designs used in North America,” said David Brondum, director–product management and sustainability, Carrier Transicold. “The Vector platform design eliminated many serviceable components, such as belts, shaft seals, vibrasorbers, and alternators. With fewer serviceable parts, there is less maintenance, which remains one of the key attractions of the technology.”

The Vector platform’s E-Drive all-electric refrigeration system enabled electric standby to become a standard feature. Use of electric power when a TRU is parked for loading, unloading, or staging enables the diesel engine to be shut off, eliminating fuel use, noise and emissions. Any fleet with access to a 460-volt power supply can simply plug in and run the Vector unit at the same full refrigeration capacity that diesel operation provides.

Although the Vector platform was introduced to North America in 2006, the technology had already proven itself in Europe, where Carrier introduced it in 1999. Today’s 8000-series Vector units are the third-generation North America units and offer significantly higher cooling capacities and operating efficiency, consuming less fuel per Btu. Designed for compliance with the US Environmental Protection Agency’s Tier 4 standard for particulate emissions, the Vector 8500 single-temperature unit and Vector 8600MT multi-temperature unit also produce fewer greenhouse gas emissions than prior models. The Vector 8100 is engineless—a plug-in-only unit intended as an alternative for trailers used for stationary cold storage that would otherwise use a diesel-powered unit.

Carrier Transicold also showcased an expanded line of Thin Film Flexible Solar Panels at MATS. Used for TRU battery charging, the solar panels are offered in three different power output levels to accommodate a wider range of user needs and budgets. The company also featured its X4 Series of belt-driven trailer refrigeration units, Supra diesel-powered truck refrigeration units, and Comfort Pro auxiliary power units.

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