Developed under the Rapidcool project consortium headed by Enviro-Cool and Pera, the new technology employs a unique spin cycle to achieve optimum cooling.
The V-Tex has the ability to cool a standard 35cl can of drink in just 45 seconds, the company claims.
Paul Tattersall, project manager at Pera Technology, said: “The energy consumed by commercial refrigerators and freezers is quite staggering. Across Europe, an estimated 85TWh of electricity is used, comparable to around 25 million households.
“Although incremental advancements in typical refrigeration technology are being made, these are unable to offset increasing use and pose a significant risk to the EC’s overall commitment to reduce energy use by 20% to 2020.
“This is not the case with our solution. We have successfully engaged with a global multibillion dollar drinks producer. They take energy reduction extremely seriously and don’t just want to hit targets, but beat them. This type of innovation that will help them do just that.
“We’re extremely excited that Enviro-Cool is now taking this technology forward. The product family is already growing. On top of the commercial unit, a smaller compact unit is also in the pipeline, which is ideal for domestic use.”
Kelvin Hall, founder of Enviro-Cool, said: “Enviro-Cool was launched in 2007 with the specific aim of developing a low energy, rapid cooling device for pre-packed beverages. The development grant and consortium was integral in the realisation of V-Tex. We’re now looking forward to realising the potential of this innovative technology, beginning with applying its potential to the domestic market.”
The Rapidcool consortium set out to develop a novel, fast-cooling apparatus that cools drinks on demand. This is a much smarter alternative to the current norm, where large volumes of drinks are stored in chillers for prolonged periods, just waiting to be consumed. This not only wastes a lot of energy, but chilled stock can easily run out. V-Tex technology is flexible and ensures consumers can always obtain a cooled beverage quickly.
The main challenge faced by the team was to optimise cooling efficiency to meet consumer demand for extremely fast cooling without ‘slushing’. This occurs when the outer layers of liquid freeze before the inner liquid is cooled. The V-Tex technology rotates the drink under optimised conditions to create a ‘Rankine vortex’ and obtain cooling speeds better than other approaches while avoiding the effects of slushing and fizzing when the drink is opened. The cooling chamber can be easily integrated into existing vending machines or open-cabinets, in addition to working as a standalone cooling unit.
Enviro-Cool founder Kelvin Hall said: “Enviro-Cool was launched in 2007 with the specific aim of developing a low energy, rapid cooling device for pre-packed beverages. The development grant and creation of the consortium was integral in the realisation of V-Tex. We’re now looking forward to realising the potential of this innovative technology.”
Source: Pera Technology
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2023
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