Refrigerated transport: quiet systems for flexible use

Noise abatement standards, such as the Dutch Piek standard, tend to prompt research on quiet systems in refrigerated transport.
Noise abatement standards, such as the Piek standard, tend to prompt research on silent systems in refrigerated transport.
As an example, Carrier is introducing Vector 1550 City, a refrigeration unit for trailers which generates noise levels below 60 decibels. Therefore, it complies with Piek, Europe’s most stringent noise-abatement standard, and according to its makers, Vector 1550 City benefits from standard installation, all-electric technology, low fuel consumption, improved reliability, light weight, etc. It is claimed to achieve this thanks to a patented combination of a hermetic compressor with an economizer capacity boost, enabling the use of a 1.5-litre diesel engine. The economizer function supplies an increase in refrigeration capacity of up to 40% during temperature pull-down, which is automatically reduced during the temperature regulation phase: adequate capacity delivery, according to the different refrigeration phases allows for drastic energy reduction, without hindering cold chain performance.

The Piek standard was established in 2003 in the Netherlands, in response to growing concerns from local government and supermarkets. It stipulates that noise levels during night deliveries (i.e. between 10.30 p.m. and 7.0 a.m.) should not exceed 60 db, the equivalent of a normal conversation. Night deliveries are therefore allowed, but strictly regulated as far as sound levels go. It is just one of several projects underway and aiming at reducing noise pollution in Europe, including France, the UK, Spain and Germany.