News story

Sainsbury's trials Dearman's world-leading cooling technology

Zero-emission cooling technology developed with support of Innovate UK is being trialled in supermarket delivery trucks for the first time.

A revolutionary zero-emission cooling system is to be trialled on supermarket deliveries in London.

Sainsbury’s is using a liquid nitrogen powered engine, supplied by cooling technology specialists Dearman and its partners, in a vehicle operating from its Waltham Point depot.

Refrigerated delivery trucks normally have a second diesel engine to chill the vehicle. The new engine is based on the Dearman Engine and harnesses the rapid expansion of liquid nitrogen to deliver zero-emission power and cooling.

The three-month trial is expected to see a saving of up to 1.6 tonnes of carbon dioxide – the equivalent of 10 trips from Land’s End to John O’Groats in a family car – 37kg of nitrogen oxides and 2kg of particulates.

First commercial trial is big milestone for Dearman

Toby Peters
Toby Peters pictured with the Dearman engine

Chief executive and founder of Dearman Toby Peters said:

Sainsbury’s is demonstrating real leadership by embracing cutting-edge British engineering that delivers performance alongside positive environmental impact.

The first commercial deployment of Dearman’s zero-emission transport refrigeration system is a significant milestone for the company, for our technology and for our vision to make the world a cleaner, cooler place.

Sainsbury’s is working to cut its carbon emissions by 30% between 2005 and 2020.

Paul Crewe, head of sustainability at Sainsbury’s, said:

This trial with Dearman is just one of the innovations we’ve introduced to help us towards this goal. Their zero-emission system is really exciting, to be running a liquid air engine quite literally means our cooling is running on thin air!

Business has grown rapidly to employ 70

Dearman was set up three years ago to develop technologies to harness the engine invented by Peter Dearman and now employs more than 70 people. The first major application of its technology is for transport refrigeration units.

It is also being developed for use in back-up power systems for buildings and for more fuel efficient vehicle engines.

The technology is being tested in the Innovate UK and Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) co-funded Cool E transport refrigeration project by a consortium of Dearman; the world-leading engineering, research and product-testing organisation HORIBA MIRA; Air Products; and Loughborough University.

Chief executive of Innovate UK Ruth McKernan said:

Today’s announcement is a real breakthrough for Dearman, and recognition of the huge commercial potential from their ground-breaking low carbon engineering system.

Innovate UK, alongside our partners in the Office for Low Emission Vehicles, is proud to have supported Dearman and congratulate the company on this success.

Dearman has worked on the Sainsbury’s trial with Hubbard Products, Dawsonrentals and Air Products.