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Efficient cooling saves money

Technology from ebm-papst has saved UK retailer Marks & Spencer half a million pounds.


Marks & Spencer has some 960 branches, of which 615 are food-only outlets. With its “Plan A”, M&S is looking to become more energy efficient, and as part of that undertaking is gradually fitting out its buildings with energy-saving technology. The condensers on the store roofs used to be major energy guzzlers, because they used older-style AC fans. M&S approached ebm-papst to find a more efficient solution.

More efficiency on the roof

After a promising trial attempt, the order was placed. Everything then had to move rapidly, as Tony Wright, Divisional Director Upgrade Market at ebm-papst UK, reports: “M&S wanted to benefit quickly from the energy-saving potential of our solution.” One challenge was the requirement that the cooling systems had to keep running during the retrofit – with a total of 1,404 fans in 258 condensers at more than 150 stores. M&S engaged a capable installer in AB Group. “To ensure that the system could keep running as the upgrade was being carried out, they gradually replaced complete groups of fans,” says Wright.

Quick success

As a result, the work was completed after just 4,150 working hours, in three months. The switch to HyBlade 910 mm diameter EC axial fans with AxiTop diffusers will save M&S more than 500,000 pounds. That means the investment in the upgrade is projected to have paid off within less than five years.

“It was a truly collaborative and successful project.”

Tony Wright, Divisional Director Upgrade Market ebm-papst UK

The new fans allow quieter, more efficient operation, cope better with higher outside temperatures, and can be easily adjusted down in colder months. “It was a truly collaborative and successful project,” Wright sums up.

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