Why Refrigerated Trucks is a Game-Changer in Eco-Friendly Refrigerated Transportation

Why Refrigerated Trucks is a Game-Changer in Eco-Friendly Refrigerated Transportation


April 16, 2024


Why Refrigerated Trucks is a Game-Changer in Eco-Friendly Refrigerated Transportation

Dealing with perishable goods is a tricky business. The last thing any business owner wants for their goods is to spoil and lose value while in transit before reaching customers. The requirement is to ensure last-mile delivery with the guarantee that the products retain their freshness and integrity till they reach the point of sale. This calls for a unique solution in the form of a refrigerated truck.
However, eco-friendly refrigerated transportation is changing the game. Let’s discover how.

How Refrigerated Trucks Came Into Existence

Before the existence of cold chain logistics, temperature-sensitive perishable products such as dairy, vegetables, meat, etc. couldn’t travel as far as they used to get spoiled during transit. Because of this, consumers could only eat seasonal edibles and food that was locally produced or sourced.
As technological advancements continued, ice-based trailers came into the picture in the 1800s.  The advent of refrigerated trucking began in the 1920s and it revolutionized how perishable goods were transported back then. Initially used by the ice cream industry, the first successful mechanically refrigerated trucks emerged in 1925.

What Are Refrigerated Trucks?

Refrigerated trucks also known as reefer trucks are uniquely designed, temperature-controlled vehicles for transporting temperature-sensitive perishable or consumable goods such as fruits, vegetables, seafood, meat, and pharmaceutical products.
The main purpose of these refrigerated trucks is to maintain the integrity, safety, and freshness of the products being transported.

3 Benefits of Refrigerated Trucks

Refrigerated transportation has a significant role in food safety, compliance, and maintaining supply and demand. Here are some of the benefits.

Suitable for a variety of items

There are many items that have short shelf-life and lose value on deterioration. That is why a lot of businesses rely on refrigerated transportation including fresh produce (fruits and vegetables), meat, dairy, confectionery, seafood, fish, meat, medical or pharmaceutical products personal care products, and more.

Catering to Increasing Demand

There is an increasing demand for perishable items but the safe transportation of these items is equally important. That is refrigerated transportation can help transfer the items between different locations safely and efficiently quickly.

Compliance with Regulatory Standards

Owing to food safety issues with the objective of avoiding contamination, deterioration, or issues related to food poisoning, it has become imperative for businesses to make refrigerated transportation a critical aspect of their supply chain.

Challenges of Using Refrigerated Trucks

Apart from the multiple benefits of the traditional reefer trucks, there are a few challenges concerning operations, environment, and energy efficiency.
  • Environmental impact due to consumption of fuel
  • Fuel Efficiency especially in the secondary or last-mile delivery
  • Equipment breakdown or malfunction at any point might put the temperature-sensitive goods at risk
However, there is more to these challenges.
The primary refrigeration system employed is diesel-driven mechanical vapor compression, which uses R404A as the refrigerant, extensively applied in low-temperature settings. Due to its broad spectrum of operating conditions, this mobile refrigeration system exhibits a notably low coefficient of performance (COP ranging from 0.5 to 1.75), leading to increased diesel usage and higher carbon dioxide emissions.
Here are some of the common refrigerants used in reefer trucks that contribute to environmental impact.
Global Warming Potential (GWP)

Tackling the Environmental Issues with ‘Eutectic’ Refrigerated Trucks

To deal with operational and environmental challenges, a eutectic refrigerated vehicle offers a much greener, more efficient, economical, and dependable solution. These eutectic refrigerated trucks maintain cold temperatures during transportation with eutectic plates placed inside the insulated truck body.

A Closer Look at Eutectic Refrigeration Technology

Eutectic refrigeration relies on the use of eutectic solution which acts as a cooling source. It is different from the traditional cooling systems that involve the expansion of refrigerant gas.
Eutectic refrigeration involves the use of hollow tubes, plates, or beams that are filled with eutectic brine to maintain the required low temperatures. These plates are charged using mains when not in use. The charged plates store the cold energy and cool the surrounding area by gradually releasing energy in the form of cooler air.
Most importantly, the refrigerated body is usually independent and not connected to the chassis. This helps in maintaining a stable temperature at all times. The main benefit of using eutectic plates is that these charged plates offer an environment-friendly, quick, and reliable way to cool the surrounding area. This means even with frequent door openings, low temperatures can be maintained for a stipulated duration.
Here’s how the refrigeration operations work.
  • Eutectic refrigeration in refrigerated trucks utilizes eutectic plates filled with a special solution that freezes at a low temperature.
  • Before a journey, these plates are frozen using an electrical refrigeration unit.
  •  During transit, the system does NOT require power as the eutectic plates absorb heat and gradually melt, thereby maintaining a constant, cold temperature inside the truck.

Introducing Rinac’s Game-Changing Eco-Friendly Trucks: ChillKart

 Rinac has innovatively designed ChillKart, eutectic refrigerated trucks for the secondary transport sector and last-mile delivery. It comes in two variants to meet diverse business needs.
  1. Stored energy refrigeration combined with GRP- RPUF Insulated containers, ideal for last-mile delivery.
  2. RPUF Insulated GRP containers with forced refrigeration for long-haul

Eco-Friendly Technical Features of ChillKart

  • RPUF ensures good thermal insulation properties with conductivity as low as 0.022W/M-K
  • GRP sheets ensure lower weight hence higher payload capacity and more area for goods
  • No moving parts as eutectic plates eliminate the need for the evaporator fan and compressor
  • Cost-savings of fuel, energy, and labour
Let’s see how ChillKart is a greener and more eco-friendly option for refrigerated transportation.

Environment Friendly

Eutectic plates have proven to be environmentally friendly due to minimized fuel usage. They are more green and economical, especially in the secondary transport sector (last-mile delivery). A one-time charge can provide a temperature range of -15℃ to -25℃ that can be maintained for 10—12 hours optimizing the use of resources.
ChillKart reduces annual expenses significantly by almost 50% when compared to refrigerated trucks or reefers

 Reduced Food Wastage

The use of refrigerated trucks contributes to the preservation and protection of the environment.  The refrigeration facility mainly prevents the spoilage of food items and ensures their integrity & freshness. By reducing spoilage, these trucks help reduce food wastage, thereby contributing fewer food items to dispose of and get discarded into landfills.

 Vehicle Independent, So No Extra Fuel

The eutectic plates do not depend on vehicle fuel for refrigeration. This means that even if the vehicle’s engine is turned off for some reason, the products’ temperature won’t be affected for nearly 10-12 hours. Thus, it almost negates the chances of food spoilage and there is no need to invest in extra fuel.

More Payload Capacity

GRP sheets used in Chillkart result in lowered weight which means higher payload capacity and effective area for merchandising.

Emission-Free Silent Operations

The absence of moving parts such as the evaporator fan and compressor during operation ensures quiet and exhaust-free operations, thus, making Chillkart an environment-friendly and cost-effective choice for refrigerated transport.

Final Words

Refrigerated transportation has transformed the way food is delivered to customers, and with advancements in technology, businesses are not only becoming cost-conscious but also environment-conscious. Rinac’s Chillkart with its eutectic plate technology effortlessly caters to the refrigeration needs while reducing the operating and service cost and maintaining excellent product protection. Chillkart is definitely a Game Changer in eco-friendly refrigerated transportation, making it a smart choice for diverse businesses.
To know more, get in touch with us today!
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