Flash defrost technology company Frigesco has been awarded new UK Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) funding of £102,000 ($159,000) to develop the system for use in air source heat pumps.

Flash defrost can reduce supermarket cooling energy costs by up to 20%, the company says.

With field trials in working supermarkets currently underway and results expected shortly, the latest grant, conferred under DECC’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund, will be used to fund joint research by Frigesco and heat pump specialist Glen Dimplex.

David Walter, managing director of Frigesco, explains: ‘Coils on ASHPs [air source heat pumps] operating in cool conditions (below 7 degrees C) in humid climates quickly ice up, and need to be regularly defrosted to maintain performance and reduce energy use. Existing approaches consume extra power, which can account for a significant component total energy use, reducing their efficiency.’

The project involves designing and building a flash defrost system which can be built into new ASHP units. It will be trialled with a production version of a Glen Dimplex A16M ASHP.