Carrier Transicold of Athens, GA is celebrating a double anniversary this year: 75 years of Carrier road transport refrigeration innovation and the 45th anniversary of the Carrier Transicold business. Carrier Transicold helps improve global transport and shipping of temperature controlled cargoes with a complete line of equipment for refrigerated trucks, trailers and containers, and is a part of UTC Building & Industrial Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX).
“Carrier’s history encompasses more than a century of innovation in air conditioning and refrigeration, and pioneering achievements in truck and trailer refrigeration have been an integral part of this story,” said David Appel, president, Carrier Transicold & Refrigeration Systems. “Now in our 75th year of providing products for road transport refrigeration, we continue to drive the industry forward with highperformance, environmentally sustainable refrigeration solutions.”
The Carrier Transicold brand was formed in 1970, when Carrier acquired the California-based transport refrigeration equipment maker Transicold Co. and combined it with its Special Products Division, which had experience in trucking applications extending back to 1940. The business was responsible for all types of transport refrigeration, including ocean-going container refrigeration that it had pioneered in 1968.
Carrier’s first foray into truck refrigeration in 1940 included the application of its model 7K refrigeration compressors in early systems. Although haulers had experimented with mechanical refrigeration since the 1920s, most transport refrigeration methods by 1940 still used ice/salt or dry-ice/gravity flow refrigeration systems.
The initial success with the rugged 7K compressor led to the development of a complete truck refrigeration system for trucks and trailers, Carrier’s Type 68D unit. Available in two sizes, the Type 68D used a four-cylinder gasoline engine coupled to a high-speed compressor. The relatively compact and adjustment-free unit boasted minimal moving parts, making it durable enough for the often rough conditions encountered by refrigerated trucks with bodies ranging up to 35 feet in length. The logistical improvement eliminated the need for haulers to replenish ice and assured more uniform temperature control over greater distances, helping to pave the way for long-haul refrigerated trucking.
Today, streamlined designs with minimal moving parts remain hallmarks of Carrier Transicold systems, as demonstrated by Vector™ trailer units, featuring EDrive™, all-electric refrigeration technology and Carrier’s X4™ series of mechanical trailer units, which have a reputation for high capacity, reliability and ease of service. In contrast to those early systems, today’s transport refrigeration units provide cooling power to haul perishable and frozen loads in 53-foot trailers, intermodal containers and railcars ranging up to 72 feet in interior length. Recent innovations from Carrier Transicold, driven by Tier 4 engine emissions regulations, have further improved fuel economy and reduced carbon emissions.
“Our X4 series and Vector trailer units and our Supra truck refrigeration units deliver the high capacities that our customers require, while also enhancing the sustainability profiles of their operations,” said Appel. “Benefits include low total cost of ownership and compliance with transport refrigeration emissions regulations.”
Carrier Transicold’s operations have expanded worldwide, with manufacturing facilities located in Athens, Ga., Rouen, France, Singapore and Shanghai. Today, Carrier Transicold plays a growing role as a critical link in enhancing the efficiency of the cold-chain, ensuring that perishables such as food and pharmaceuticals reach consumers in developed and developing countries.
“Our products have long served an important need delivering food and other temperature-sensitive goods to expanding population centers,” said Appel. “It’s a heritage we’re proud of and one that we intend to build further upon with more sustainable and innovative transport refrigeration solutions. It is this higher purpose that motivates and excites us to continue.”