Energy-sipping fans help manage temperature extremes for distributor
October 22, 2011 - MMH Editorial
The distribution of energy drinks, soda and beer requires precision temperature control in different areas of a warehouse. Maintaining a comfortable environment for workers is just as important as controlling product temperature. Minnesota-based College City Beverage found a balance between the two by installing high-volume, low-speed industrial ceiling fans in the truck bay at its new distribution center.
According to operations manager Tim Ritter, the facility faces seasonal temperature extremes that have a profound impact on overall comfort and productivity. Following the installation of the fans, the truck bay stays 10 degrees cooler in the summer months, and the air flow helps slush and snow evaporate more rapidly in the winter months.
This precipitation build-up was creating a slippery surface for the truck loading personnel. “The wet floors create a slick surface resulting in safety concerns, Ritter says. “We needed something to help eliminate the slippery surface.”
The fans use four aluminum blades, which vary in width and pitch angle along their entire length, to move more than 360,000 cubic feet of air per minute. The blade design helps to increase the airflow by extending the reach up to seven times the fan’s diameter.
Using a state-of-the-art electronic, temperature system that monitors the facility 24/7, College City could immediately feel and begin to measure the impact. With operating costs of roughly 10 cents an hour, the fans could pay for themselves in as little as six months through lower energy costs. Ritter estimated 10% to 15% savings in cooling costs, and says he looks forward to energy savings in the winter months as well.
More Storage coverage.
More from Modern’s 2012 Casebook