Tecumseh Products Company and Torad Engineering announced today they have entered into a joint development and licensing agreement to begin utilizing Torad’s patented spool compressor technology in commercial refrigeration applications. The multi-year partnering agreement has been signed by both parties and initial development work has already begun.
The combination of Torad’s patented spool design and Tecumseh’s vast refrigeration research and development capability has the goal of bringing smaller, more efficient, more reliable “next generation” compressor technology to the commercial refrigeration marketplace.
“At Tecumseh, we know that our motor technology is the key driver of future change,” says Jim Connor, Tecumseh president and CEO. “This partnership with Torad and utilization of the spool machine technology enables us to take Tecumseh compressors to the next technological level. We think this is a game-changer, much the way scroll technology was when it was introduced 30 years ago.”
Torad’s spool compressor technology features a simple rotary design with four main components: rotor, main housing, vane and bearing housing. Unlike the complex scroll and screw compressors, the components can be manufactured utilizing lower cost capital equipment. Reliability features include tolerance of liquid flood-back, one moving assembly and no axial loads assisting in bearing longevity.
“Torad’s spool technology will transform the refrigerant compressor market, enabling forward-looking companies like Tecumseh to dramatically reduce manufacturing costs, improve margins and grow market share,” says Joe Orosz, president of Torad Compressor and a 20-year veteran of the compressor industry. “We are very excited to be teaming with Tecumseh, a great American company with a strong heritage of innovation, manufacturing excellence and an outstanding support and distribution channel.”
Tecumseh has a long history of bringing innovation to the air conditioning and refrigeration industry, including the design of the first window air conditioning compressors in the 1940s, introduction of the original “AE” mini compressor in the early 1960s, and most recently the 2011 launch of the AE2, a totally redesigned next-generation version of the longtime industry workhorse.
Torad CEO and spool machine inventor, Greg Kemp, explains the spool machine is a substantial breakthrough that will have a far-reaching impact on many energy conversion applications.
“This is a major step in the commercialization of the spool machine technology,” Kemp says. ”We are pleased to be taking this important step with Tecumseh, a brand known worldwide for quality products and service. As the core spool machine technology continues to develop, we will see cost savings and energy efficiency improvement across a broad range of applications, such as gas compression, waste heat recovery, and internal combustion engines.”