At nearly 70, Thermo King, a business unit of Ingersoll Rand Company Ltd., numbers among America’s older companies, but it is going green, not gray, as it approaches its eighth decade. During a recent press conference, Ted Fick, president of Thermo King Americas, unveiled new products and talked about the company’s perspectives on business and the environment.
“We continue to believe that showing environmental leadership is the right thing to do,” Fick noted. “Practicing responsible stewardship not only saves our customers money, but is good for the environment. We call this good business. We are proud of the technology that Thermo King currently has and will continue to develop.”
As proof positive, the company announced the availability of new products and programs designed to deliver both bottom line and environmental benefits, including a new dry cell battery engineered for longer life, greater efficiency and lower lifecycle costs. Dubbed the “EON,” the new 75-pound battery uses Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) technology enabling it to deep cycle as well as provide five-second cranking power, even at low temperatures. It also features a 200-min. reserve capacity. A four-year, full-replacement warranty backs up the EON. (Part numbers are 203-550 for the threaded stud version and 203-551 for the smooth post.)
The EON battery is already debuting in more than one Thermo King application. In a refrigeration unit, for example, it can help reduce fuel costs, according to the company, because less engine time is required to recharge the EON when the refrigeration unit is in the “Cycle-Sentry” mode. Since it is designed to last approximately five times longer than a wet cell battery, users can also look forward to buying fewer batteries over all.
The battery is also incorporated in another new product: The EON Power Pack, an auxiliary power system for operating truck lights. The Power Pack is designed to help avoid dead truck batteries caused by running lights. It includes a low-voltage disconnect, a weatherproof switch with integrated 45-minute timer and a charging circuit to connect the system to the truck alternator or reefer unit.
Thermo King introduced a new cargo heater kit as well. The E-28 Cargo Heater Kit is designed to protect perishable cargo from cold temperatures without running the truck’s engine. It includes an Espar D8 diesel-fuel operated heater, wiring to the truck battery system, a 110-volt plug-in connection, weatherproof thermostat enclosure and fuel pump and hoses contained in a painted aluminum enclosure. According to Thermo King, the system burns 0.26 gallons per hour in the High mode and 0.11 gallons per hour on Low to deliver 27,300 Btu/hr. (on High) or 11,900 Btu/hr. (output in Low).
In addition to new products, the company also announced that it has again teamed with Ingersoll Rand Financial Services to offer financing for the TriPac Hybrid Auxiliary Idle Reduction and Temperature Management System. According to Fick, Thermo King currently has about 46% of the engine-based APU market in North America and hopes to push that to about 50% by yearend. “The engine-based APU market was about 35,000 units last year and we expect it to grow to 49,000 over all in 2007,” he noted.
Among new TriPac customers, Thermo King numbers long-time customer Kennesaw Transportation, Inc. of White, GA and Doak Transport, Inc. of Las Cruces, NM. Kennesaw is an all-refrigerated carrier while Doak is a flatbed operation.
For refrigerated carriers operating in California, Thermo King is offering several options to help fleets comply with the California Air Resources Board’s (CARB) Airborne Toxic Control Measure (ATCM) regulations for transport refrigeration units (TRUs), including a Level 2 diesel particulate filter, engine retrofit kits, and new CARB-compliant reefer units. For more information, go to www.thermoking.com.