Sterling Partners with KGM Refrigeration to Install Breakthrough Sustainable Chilling Technology for API Manufacturing

23rd Jan 2024

Sterling Pharma Solutions has announced the results of a pilot project to assess the use of new, ultra-low charge ammonia chilling technology. Sterling initially installed a 150kW chiller at its API manufacturing plant in Cramlington, UK, which over the course of a 15-month trial demonstrated quantifiable energy cost savings of 65% compared to other chillers, and will now look to roll out the technology across its global network.

Partnering with KGM Refrigeration, a UK-based independent company with established experience in providing refrigeration solutions in a wide range of industrial sectors, Sterling installed KGM’s first-generation chiller, which reduces the volumes of ammonia used by 75% against traditional ammonia-based cooling methods, and combined with a synchronous reluctance IE5 motor, offers high levels of energy efficiency and lower costs. The technology was installed and commissioned in August 2022, and since then has run for over 5,000 hours, allowing KGM to test the equipment in a real-life manufacturing scenario to gather data, validate results and optimise the design of the unit.

“At Sterling, we have a strong commitment to technology, innovation, and sustainability. Our successful partnership with KGM clearly underlines this ethos, while supporting the company’s ultimate corporate goal of achieving complete carbon neutrality,” said James Rogers, Site Head at Sterling’s Cramlington site. “The pilot programme has also demonstrated the significant financial advantages attainable when adopting this new chilling technology, which we now plan to roll out across our network of facilities, as and where appropriate.”

First opened in 1969, Sterling’s 42-acre Cramlington site is the company’s global headquarters and currently employs over 630 people, supporting the development of APIs from development through to clinical trial manufacture and commercial supply.

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