The purpose of the Ultracold Freezer Improvement Program is to replace old, high-energy-consumption ultracold freezers with new ultracold freezers across University of Melbourne campuses and affiliated research institutes. New freezers reduce energy bills and minimise the risk of operational failure.
Please Note: Time sensitive by December 2017.
In 2015 the University obtained a loan from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) of $9.1m to undertake a suite of renewable energy generation and efficiency projects at various campuses. $400,000 of this amount was allocated to efficient ultracold freezer upgrades.
The University currently uses approximately 400 ultracold freezers across its seven campuses. These are situated predominantly in biomedical and bioscience research laboratories.
Each year that an ultracold freezer ages, its energy consumption increases by approximately 1 kWh/day. Therefore, after 10 years an ultracold freezer can double its energy consumption from approximately 12 kWh/day to nearly 24 kWh/day. Furthermore, older freezers are significantly more prone to operational failure, presenting risks such as spoilage of research samples and jeopardising research data collection.
- CEFC Leverage Funding is available to research groups wanting to replace old ultracold freezers or purchase new ultracold freezers. University departments or affiliated institutes purchase the new freezers, but will be reimbursed $2,500 (minimum) per freezer from the CEFC leverage fund.
- Departments wishing to purchase ultracold freezers will also be able to access best market prices through the University’s iProcurement system, enabling substantial further savings and other support benefits.
- Campus Services take care of the extraction of any replaced freezers at no cost to the research unit or faculty. Please contact Nick Swan: nick.swan[a]unimelb.edu.au.
- Cost saving (approx. $5,500) – By purchasing a new ultracold freezer now, departments will receive a $2,500 reimbursement from the CEFC leverage fund, as well as savings of approximately $3,000 (depending on supplier) on standard ultracold freezer prices through iProcurement.
- Reduced risk – Old ultracold freezers are significantly more prone to operational failure, presenting risks such as jeopardising research materials or spoiling research samples.
- Energy saving – New ultracold freezers are more energy efficient and use approximately 12kWh less energy per day than a 10-year-old ultracold freezer. This is equivalent to savings of $525 (at 12c/kWh) and 4 tonnes of carbon per year per ultracold freezer.
- Monitoring – New ultracold freezers are connected to alarm and monitoring systems, enabling users to track temperature remotely and reducing risks related to operational failure.
- Department purchases and pays for new ultracold freezer through iProcurement system
- Submit evidence of purchase to Peter Krotsis; evidence must include:
- Invoice or purchase order
- Email with Themis code used to purchase freezer
- Contact details for local department authorised financial delegate
- Reimbursement confirmed and email sent when funds have been transferred back to department
New freezers are delivered, unpacked (packing materials are removed for recycling), installed and commissioned by the supply company.
During the funding offer period collection and disposal of old ultracold freezers will be conducted at no cost to the faculty by Campus Services. However after this period the disposal/recycling of old ultracold freezers is the responsibility of the department.
Freezers must be degassed (to collect refrigerant gases) prior to disposal – if required, contact the freezer management team for advice, email@example.com or 8344 0888.
What is Freezer Temperature Monitoring?
The University of Melbourne enterprise Freezer Temperature monitoring Program is a program designed to log and monitor the temperature of research and laboratory fridges, freezers and Ultracold freezers.
The Freezer Monitoring Program uses the testo Saveris temperature Monitoring system.
The monitoring program measures and logs the temperature of each research and laboratory fridge or freezer. This information is used to verify the performance of university fridges and freezers. In addition, alarms can be set to monitor temperatures 24/7 . High and low limit set points identify the normal operating range, if the temperature exceeds the set points then an alarm in the form of an SMS message or an email can be sent to a series of responsible clients.
This early notification of unusual freezer temperatures has proved invaluable in preventing substantial freezer spoilage losses. Early detection of freezer faults and attendance by staff in a timely manner has saved many research programs from the disaster of losing their valuable cold stored research samples.
The testo Saveris system operates within a local WIFI range and is connected across the University through the university IT network, It transmits the collected temperature data back to a base-station and server for data storage and analysis.
What is the Freezer Management Program?
Identifies the extent of the risk across the University
What is the risk to the University?
It's not just a monetary loss, but a variety of issues:
- Research & Business continuity
- Loss of unique research materials
- Loss of IP and Novel Medical & Scientific research
- Impact of reputation with the public, government & corporate agencies, granting bodies.
- Impact on future funding
How, What, When, Where, Why, Who pays?
- 2000+ fridges and freezers in 22 locations on main campus
- $40M of materials in 300 Freezers in one building alone
- Biomaterial value approx $800M campus wide
Emergency backup Ultracold Freezers
The UoM Insurance office and Infrastructure Service – Freezer Management Program has provided funds to purchase centrally located emergency backup Ultracold Freezers. These are being purchased and located strategic university building locations.
Equipment Monitoring System
We needed a monitoring system that will:
- Constantly measure (equipment) cabinet temperature
- Alerts Clients when there is a problem by email and/or SMS
- Provide real time data capture and monitoring
- Remote access of data Presents data in a variety of formats
- Simple to install in all environments and locations
- Cost effective to retrofit into existing facilities
- Economical / Reliable / Robust
- Low maintenance – self diagnostics