Daikin is not only a very well-known air conditioning and heating company. The global group wants to play a primary role in trailer refrigeration, also thanks to the recent acquisitions and company additions all over Europe. Indeed, the refrigeration business unit, which was founded some years ago, counts on quality, reliability and affordability as pillars for approaching the market. However, products are and remain the core of the company activity, as proven by the latest one, the Exigo E1500 engine-driven single-temperature 15 kW trailer unit revealed at Solutrans 2021. The trailer unit is conceived to reduce energy consumption, optimize airflow for temperature accuracy and efficiency, increase pull-down and on-grid efficiency, as well as to reduce maintenance and downtime.
Daikin for trailer refrigeration: Exigo 1500
Exigo E1500 is the very first Daikin-branded product. The variable speed unit, within a range from 10 to 120 rps, is electronically controlled, with the compressor that is controlled by an inverter. Due to the presence of the inverter itself, it’s possible to get the highest performances even when the trailer is parked and connected to electricity.
By 2030, we want to achieve 50 percent reduction, while by 2050 we want our production to be net zero, which is absolutely important. Apart from just the refrigeration products, we bring services to our customers after the sale and throughout the whole life of the productPatrick Adrian Maughan, Managing Director at Daikin
What’s actually interesting, however, is the way the platform is conceived. «Exigo is an electrified platform, the first model we launch is suitable for hosting a diesel engine, as we see customers will still require it for the next 5-7 years», told us Marco Napolitano, Product Manager Transport Refrigeration at Daikin. «However, the platform we’ve conceived is designed to be adapted to a full electric environment: we’re already working on the engineless version. The electric trailer refrigeration unit is designed to accept different power inputs from batteries to axial generators, from solar panels to fuel cells. So, different types of direct current inputs can be managed for powering the refrigeration unit. This is currently a prototype, which is being tested all over Europe in extremely challenging conditions. The product will be launched in the first half of 2022».
It means that the layout will surely be the same, while some small changes are supposed to be made to the software part. Marco Napolitano also told us that the electronics has been developed by Daikin, starting from proprietary components. «We want to get ready to electric mobility, without neglecting the current requirements of our customers. Talking about light trucks or vans, we’ve already launched full electric products and we’re also testing the use of photovoltaic panels, keeping up to our philosophy based on a unique layout that can receive inputs from more than one source».
The Pegognaga site as the home of transport refrigeration
As for transport refrigeration, however, so much is going on under the Daikin roof. We had the opportunity to ask Managing Director Patrick Adrian Maughan about major investments and strategic changes. «We needed to expand our service network all over Europe, also where we were not that known. That’s why we relied a lot on the acquisition of Italian specialist Zanotti. Along with some more moves on the market, the acquisition of Zanotti allowed us to grow significantly over the last few years. Now, we can rely on factories in several European countries. The one in Pecognaga (in the province of Mantova, in Northern Italy, ed) is where we produce our transport refrigeration units. There, we will soon build new labs, a design center and develop the current production site for a multi-million euros investments. Pecognaga will always be the home of the design and test as for transport refrigeration, regardless the opening of other production sites all over the world. We’ve also increased the share of young graduates recruited over there, as we truly want the site to grow.
We want to get ready to electric mobility, without neglecting the current requirements of our customers. Talking about light trucks or vans, we’ve already launched full electric products and we’re also testing the use of photovoltaic panelsMarco Napolitano, Product Manager Transport Refrigeration at Daikin
Daikin: net zero production strategy
«By 2030, we want to achieve 50 percent reduction, while by 2050 we want to achieve net zero carbon emissions across the entire operations and products’ lifecycle, which is absolutely important. Apart from just the refrigeration products, we bring services to our customers after the sale and throughout the whole life of the product», continues Mr Maughan. «Daikin Europe accounts for 4 billion dollars within Daikin Industries. In the future, our main efforts will be on the matter of sustainability. We see electrification is coming and we’re preparing ourselves».