SFU and Cool-It clean energy research nets major federal funds, targets idle engines

Simon Fraser University researcher Dr. Majid Bahrami will use his expertise in refrigeration and energy conversion systems to develop green air conditioning and refrigeration systems (AC-R) in close collaboration with Cool-It, reducing fuel consumption and emissions caused by the idling engines of service vehicles and long-haul trucks.

With new grants totaling $4.5 million, including $2.9 million from Automotive Partnership Canada (APC), the associate professor in Mechatronic Systems Engineering (MSE) will lead a team in building sustainable AC-R technology for service vehicles enabling them to deliver air conditioning and refrigeration even when their engines are turned off.

Cool-It Hiway Services and Saputo Dairy Products in B.C., and CrossChasm Technologies in Ontario are the industrial partners of this major research project. The project aims as a significant reduction in fuel consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in long-haul and refrigerated trucks, heavy and light duty vans, tourist buses and emergency vehicles.

This project includes development of eight different technologies to develop the new energy conversion technology, Bahrami and his team will capture waste heat from engine exhaust to power the AC-R and adsorption cooling system.

“This project places SFU at the forefront of innovative sustainable energy conversion and will bring a cutting-edge research facility to our Surrey campus,” said Bahrami. “For consumers, it will help bring milk and frozen food to the local supermarkets in a more environmentally friendly manner.”