Promising performances for a PCM used in refrigerated transport

British and Chinese scientists collaborated to develop a refrigerated container which can keep the inside temperature between 5 and 12°C for up to 120 hours.

Scientists from the University of Birmingham (United Kingdom) and from the CRRC Shijiazhuang (China)1 collaborated to develop a refrigerated truck-to-train container which can keep the inside temperature constant in the range 5-12°C  for up to 120 hours, thanks to a phase-change material (PCM). The exact composition of the material has not yet been disclosed. Nevertheless, several cold chain logistics companies in China have expressed strong interest in the container, which provides a more stable temperature, compared with the mechanical units, and hence a higher quality of goods at the destination. It does not need a power supply during its journey, making transfer between road and rail easier. The container’s location and temperature can also be monitored in real time using mobile communication technologies.



The container has been tested for commercial trials carrying real goods for 35,000 kilometres of road and 1000 kilometres of rail transport across different climate zones.

1 The CRRC Shijiazhuang Co. Ltd is China’s largest railway truck maintenance company and rail vehicle air-conditioning equipment manufacturer.

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