Thermo King Axlepower Powers Woolworths’ Refrigerated Trailer In South Africa

Thermo King®, a leader in transport temperature control solutions and a brand of Cold Chain Federation member Trane Technologies, announced today that the DP World logistics business and food retailer Woolworths are the first African companies to use the Thermo King AxlePower energy recovery system on the road. The new Thermo King refrigerated trailer, which promotes sustainability in the African transportation sector, has begun operations on Woolworth’s route between Johannesburg and Cape Town.

The AxlePower system has demonstrated its endurance by running successfully in harsh situations, providing continual cooling and uninterrupted airflow inside the trailer in ambient temperatures above 40°C. Over the course of 15,000 kilometres, the system has functioned in electric mode for more than 97% of the time, without using the diesel engine. The technology also did not require a connection to the grid to compensate for a lack of energy or to balance battery charge. When compared to standard diesel-powered trailer refrigeration systems, the AxlePower is estimated to save up to 27 tonnes of CO2 each year.

“This project marks an important milestone towards a more sustainable future for Africa’s transport and logistics sector,” said Ronnie Meechan, Thermo King’s regional director for the Middle East and Africa. “In the fast growing South African market, carriers seeking to cut fuel usage are increasingly turning to electrification and hydrogen technology. Our work with Woolworths and DP World demonstrates our common view that by embracing technological developments and innovative solutions, we can make considerable progress towards reducing environmental impact and crafting a brighter tomorrow.”

“As part of our commitment to sustainability, we are excited to introduce Thermo King AxlePower technology to our fleet,” said Feroz Koor, Woolworths Holdings Group Head of Sustainability. “Following the rollout of our electric online delivery vehicles last year, this initiative aligns with our Vision 2025+ goal to have net zero carbon emissions by 2040 and ambition to create a more sustainable and efficient supply chain while reducing our carbon footprint.”

“We are proud to usher in a new era of energy-efficient and environmentally conscious refrigeration,” said Esha Mansingh, Head of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability for Sub-Saharan Africa at DP World. “This initiative is consistent with DP World’s sustainability strategy, ‘Our World, Our Future’, which ensures that we operate as a responsible business, prioritising sustainability and impact on people, the environment, and the communities in which we operate in order to achieve a better, more socially equitable and sustainable future. This caravan displays disruptive logistics technology that has the potential to change how we refrigerate commodities on our highways. Thermo King AxlePower is a huge step towards more sustainable and responsible logistical procedures.”

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