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Demonstration of the next generation standardised integrated cooling and heating packages for commercial and public buildings based on environment-friendly carbon dioxide vapour compression cycles.

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - MultiPACK (Demonstration of the next generation standardised integrated cooling and heating packages for commercial and public buildings based on environment-friendly carbon dioxide vapour compression cycles.)

Reporting period: 2018-04-01 to 2021-09-30

The introduction of the new EU regulation on F-gases (fluorinated greenhouse gases) in 2015 has prompted the need to discontinue their use and replace them with less environmentally harmful solutions. MultiPACK is an EU project that aims at building confidence in integrated heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC&R) packages based on CO2 technology, as an alternative to F-gases, installed in high energy-demanding buildings. The project will help owners of high energy-demanding buildings to:
• reduce energy consumption and environmental impact;
• increase the economic benefits by saving energy and the costs of maintenance and servicing;
• use the most recent CO2 technology;
• comply with all regulations and environmental commitment.
MultiPACK goal will be achieved by operating demonstration tests at 6 relevant commercial sites in Southern Europe for at least one year. The project consortium consists of 7 partners across Europe: one is a technical university (NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Technology), serving as the coordinator of the project; two are national, independent research institutes (SINTEF Energy Research, CNR Italian National Research Council); two OEMs developing and manufacturing the components and the MultiPACK system (DANFOSS, ENEX srl); one is a contractor installing and maintaining refrigerating units (RACE); one is a multinational corporation owning and operating supermarkets in Portugal (SONAE).
In the first 18 months of activity the Consortium has spent a lot of effort to establish itself, define guidelines and procedures for the several activities, both technical and administrative, to locate the six demo sites (three supermarkets and three other high energy-demanding buildings), and to design the MultiPACK units to be installed.
Finding the six demo sites has proved particularly challenging. Although one of the partners, SONAE, owns and runs a large chain of supermarkets in Portugal, they have decided to provide only one supermarket demo site, as opposed to three as originally planned. The basis for this decision is financial: the investment cost of a MultiPACK unit is higher than a traditional HFC unit, despite having significantly lower annual operating costs. Significant delays were then introduced into several tasks of the project, to the point that the six demo sites could be found only at the very end of the first reporting period, that is 18 months since the start of the project.
One unit has been installed in a supermarket in Rome and is starting operations in June 2018; the supermarket in Portugal is opening in October 2018; the other four demo sites will start operations at different times in summer 2018. As such, there are not yet any experimental data to present. The first results, however, can be disseminated as soon as the supermarket in Rome will open.
The collected results in the selected six MultiPACK sites and their subsequent public sharing will lead these technologies, like the integrated refrigeration and heat pumping concepts, to spread like wildfire in both various energy-consuming applications and any climate context, including warm areas. The introduction of these new energy-efficient units, in addition to complying with EU regulations and reducing the impact on the environment, will demonstrate a decrease of the specific energy consumption by more than 25% in comparison with traditional technologies, while also reducing the total cost of ownership. Integration into Smart Grids is also an option, since MultiPACK units are able to pump heat and store thermal energy in an efficient way.
Rome unit
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