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LONDON: April 24, 2018. Unilever has just finished a six-month trial of the Dearman Hubbard zero emission transport refrigeration unit (TRU), using a truck that travelled more than 18,000 kilometres to collect and deliver Ben & Jerry’s and Ola ice cream.

Dearman has patented the world’s first ‘clean-cold’ engine TRU driven by the expansion of liquid nitrogen to produce clean power and cold air with zero emissions.

Unilever ice creamAccording to Unilever, a single Dearman refrigeration unit maintained a perfect temperature during the trial to keep its ice creams at their best, while the technology led to a reduction in CO2 emissions of 600 kilos a month compared to a conventional diesel system.

“By opening up our logistics network to Dearman’s innovation, and collaborating in this way, we have provided our partner with a great opportunity to test a revolutionary product under real life conditions,” said Raghuraman Ramakrishnan, Unilever’s vice president for Logistics Europe.

“Reducing the environmental impact of our logistics network is an integral part of the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan and our goal is to make sure that our transport and distribution systems are as green as possible. We are committed to advancing sustainable solutions in logistics and leveraging new technologies once they become commercially available, in order to achieve this,” he added.

Dearman, which has financial backing from the British government, says its zero-emissions TRU will launch commercially later this year. The company calculates that if all 28 European Union countries converted their reefer fleets to zero-emission units over the next decade, they would collectively save 36 million tonnes of carbon dioxide, 224,000 tonnes of nitrogen oxide, 30,000 tonnes of particulate matter and almost 36 billion litres of diesel fuel.

Dearman CEO Scott MacMeekin added: “This trial has taken us a big step forward on that journey as we have been able to demonstrate that Dearman technology is able to provide environmental and societal benefits alongside operational improvements while remaining cost competitive.”

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