At this time of year, many food processors are planning next year’s capital expenditures, which often means piecing together budgets for upcoming food plant construction projects. It is important to create the most accurate budget possible: a tricky task. Frequently, food processors prepare budgets without the assistance of an experienced design-builder. By doing so, they make assumptions that can skew their entire budget.
After working with compressors for nearly three decades, there’s one mistake I see people making time and time again when it comes to their compressor maintenance. They keep their daily logs, recording necessary temperatures regularly, but when they’re through, they simply put the logs aside and don’t look at them again. The results are not analyzed for corrective measures, if discovered. Are you looking back to ensure you’re addressing the inconsistencies and issues you notice during your compressor evaluations? Analyzing the daily logs is just as important as writing it down. Continue Reading “The One Mistake You’re Making With Your Compressor Logs”
While we’ve already blogged about ways to determine the fitness of your refrigeration compressor, it’s important to pay attention to the big picture as well. Ensure you keep up with the the health of your entire refrigeration compressor package, as failure to check components including the motor, control panel and suction superheat, can cause major failures. Here are the 14 key factors to check within each component of your compressor package.
I recently joined hundreds of refrigeration stakeholders in Atlanta for ATMOsphere America 2015, an annual natural refrigerants conference. Stellar was among the 37 sponsors, and I among the group of 60-plus speakers, leading a presentation on the advantages of packaged refrigeration equipment. I also attended several sessions myself, leaving the conference with valuable takeaways on the refrigeration industry, including my favorites below: Continue Reading “The Latest in Natural Refrigerants: ATMOsphere America 2015 Recap”
All lighting is not created equal. When selecting LED or fluorescent lighting for your food facility or warehouse, understand that each type is better suited for some areas rather than others. How can you know which is the right fit for your plant?
Do you give enough care and consideration to your food processing facility’s electrical equipment? As a senior electrical engineer for Stellar, I joined several of my peers in a discussion in this month’s Food Engineering article, “Electrical systems and components: The lifeblood of your facility,” on electrical safety, systems maintenance and more. In the article, I reviewed factors that impact your plant’s electrical well-being. Below I describe them in greater detail for Food for Thought’s readers: Continue Reading “3 Ways to Prevent Food Plant Electrical System Malfunctions”
Automation has gained plenty of traction in the food and beverage processing industry thanks to benefits including cost savings, labor reduction and increased food safety. However, a slew of national and international guidelines and requirements has made owning automation equipment more complex than ever before—with risk assessments an especially gray area. The good news? Clearer risk assessment requirements have arrived from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), offering more consistent expectations.
Did you tune in to our Food Engineering webinar last week? We discussed the changing refrigeration climate, including what you should know about revised compliance schedules, innovative refrigeration technologies and the pros and cons for each. You can check out our full presentation in the SlideShare provided below.
Due to its phaseout, an alphabet soup of replacement refrigerants has been developed to replace R-22 in existing chillers. However, most of these alternatives have drawbacks. Some replacements severely penalize the performance of the chiller, while others have significant glide—and all have higher global warming potential than ammonia. And though these refrigerants may not be on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) phaseout list yet, they have the potential to be. As new chillers rise to replace the old, ammonia is one refrigerant that has become an effective alternative. Continue Reading “Refrigeration for the Future: Low-Charge Refrigerated Packaged Equipment”
The majority of industrial refrigeration systems in the U.S. are central-station ammonia systems—the backbone of the food and beverage industry. For over 100 years, these ammonia systems have dominated the industry because they not only have superior thermos-physical properties, but also because they’re environmentally friendly. Ammonia has a global warming potential (GWP) and ozone depletion potential (ODP) of zero.