Friday, June 22, 2012

No. 543: A highly energy efficient vending machine that reduces power consumption in the daytime by 95% (June 22, 2012)

Coca-Cola Japan, Japan’s largest drink producer, developed a new highly energy efficient vending machine. The new vending machine can keep the inside at below five degrees centigrade for more than half a day with only a small amount of electricity once it is cooled in the night, because its structure retains cold air inside. The electricity required in the daytime is only 5% of the electricity required by the conventional vending machine. That is, the new machine requires electricity just for operation, and no electricity is required to cool drinks inside. The conventional machine needs 300 W in the daytime, but the new machine needs only 17 W. However, the total power consumption of the day remains unchanged because the new machine needs electricity for cooling in the night.

The conventional vending machine controls its power consumption by cooling only drinks in the lower row. Coca-Cola Japan reviewed the existing structure and modified it to enable the new machine to cool every inch of the inside in the night. In addition, it used vacuum insulating materials to block off outside air and infilled the joints of the machine with rubber. Japan has about 2,500,000 million vending machines, 980,000 (or about 40%) of which are owned by Coca-Cola Japan. The demonstration test will be conducted in July in the suburbs of Tokyo, and the new energy saving machine will replace the existing machine starting late this year.    

One of the latest models of Coca-Cola Japan's vending machine. It has solar panels on its top, and generated electricity is stored and used for lighting during the hours of darkness. 

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