Bashas' Installs Sustainable Thermal Energy Storage System

Bashas' Family of Stores is installing a new low-impact, sustainable system for storing thermal energy at its distribution center in the Phoenix area to provide significant energy savings, energy demand management and heightened protection of frozen food products.

Teaming with Houston-based thermal energy management company Viking Cold Solutions and power provider Salt River Project  (SRP) to install Viking's Thermal Energy Storage (TES) system, Bashas' also seeks to reduce energy distribution and delivery challenges for SRP by shifting energy demand to night hours. The passive TES system stores energy at night for subsequent day use, enabling less refrigeration runtime and reduction of load during peak afternoon hours.

This project includes the installation of the TES system and 24/7 energy monitoring within Bashas' ice-cream freezer at the distribution center.

"We continuously evaluate energy efficiency opportunities, as refrigeration is one of our highest-operating expenses," said Mike Basha, VP of logistics at Bashas'. "We support technologies that provide greater temperature stability, helping us to continually provide low product prices to our customers. SRP is an innovative power utility, and we are excited about this partnership and glad we were able to come together to fund this project."

SRP will also fund the third-party research analysis for the project, evaluating the TES system's phase change material (PCM) for its efficiency improvements and effectiveness at shifting energy load from on-peak to off-peak hours. Tempe, Ariz.-based SRP collaborated with Arizona State University's School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, along with Nexant's Utility Services Group, to measure the results of the project and extrapolate the potential impact of this technology on additional low-temperature refrigeration loads in the Phoenix area.

Chandler, Ariz.-based Bashas' operates more than 100 grocery stores under the Food City, AJ's Fine Foods, Eddie's Country Store, Bashas' and Bashas' Dine banners.

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