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    HOF innovative green refrigeration technologies for enhanced sustainability

    products-servicesHOF Sonderanlagenbau GmbH
    January 18th 2024

    HOF Sonderanlagenbau has developed a suite of innovative and technologically advanced refrigeration technologies to power its Freeze Drying and Freeze-Thaw solutions.

    When used in combination, these technologies make major contributions to enhanced sustainability performance by reducing energy use and emissions, as well as easier compliance with impending regulatory requirements on use of refrigerants.

    Technological advantage

    HOF’s innovative refrigeration technologies have been developed and are manufactured in-house by HOF backed up by the company’s industry-leading expertise in lyophilization.

    The combination of proprietary and highly modular designs, full control over engineering and manufacture, and intensive customer focus, creates a portfolio of technologies that are highly scalable, reliable, and promote optimized energy use and reduced OPEX operating costs.

    They are designed to support its HOF Freeze-Drying and Freeze-Thaw Systems and to meet customer needs to overcome process limitations imposed by F-Gas regulations and other regulatory requirements with sustainable and future-proof solutions. These form a double-edged sword that not only increases the requirements for compliance but also place supply chain pressures on green refrigerants.

    Complementary technologies

    HOF has developed several pioneering technologies based on the use of natural refrigerants as alternatives to conventional compression refrigeration that uses problematic refrigerants such as R404A/R507A that have high environmental impacts.

    High efficiency compression refrigeration: Synthetic refrigerants such as R452A, R410A are used in conventional refrigeration systems, which HOF offers with two-stage compressors for refrigeration in the freeze-drying process if requested by the customer. As known and well-tried refrigerants, these have the advantage of being non-flammable and non-toxic. They also require little space and low investment costs. However, their use is governed by EU F-Gas Regulations.

    Air as a refrigerant: Using air as refrigerant offers multiple advantages. Air is available everywhere, can be used safely and, with a Global Warming Potential (GWP) of zero, does not promote climate change. Legal regulations regarding the F-Gas Regulation consequently do not apply. Furthermore, ultra-low temperatures below -80 °C can easily be achieved with the cold air machines of type Mirai Intex. The cold air machines are ideal for the usage in centralized refrigeration system to serve multiple Freeze-Dryers within the HOF CryoBlizzard Central Cooling Unit or as integrated compact machine in the HOF Freeze-Thaw Unit.

    Hydrocarbons as a refrigerant: HOF’s two-stage CAR6 cascade system allows users to achieve low temperatures using the natural hydrocarbon refrigerants ethane and propene, which allow a very high level of efficiency to be achieved with maximum flexibility. The cascade systems ensure safe and future-proof plant operation.

    Nitrogen as a refrigerant: HOF plant using liquid nitrogen as a refrigerant offer immediate cooling performance, with nitrogen at -196 °C supplied directly from tanks installed outdoors. In addition, these plants offer easy commissioning and a future-proof design because they are not affected by the existing legal regulations. They also feature low maintenance costs while offering a high level of temperature flexibility.

    User benefits

    HOF’s advanced refrigeration systems are green technologies that reduce the environmental impacts of lyophilization processes and make them more sustainable and future proof.

    They use energy-efficient designs to help companies comply with emerging regulatory requirements and reduce OPEX costs. All the systems are also based on mature technologies that have been well established and proven in practice.

    They also feature low noise, minimal maintenance and operating requirements, high flexibility on working temperature range and easy installation.


    Click on HOF Innovative Refrigeration Technologies to learn more.


    Freeze Drying Systems by HOF

    HOF innovative green refrigeration technologies for  enhanced sustainability

    HOF CryoBlizzard ProPhase process cooling for exhaust gas cleaning and solvent condensation in compliance with the new “TA-Luft” Regulation.

    HOF innovative green refrigeration technologies for  enhanced sustainability

    Typical CryoBlizzard installation:  compressor unit (left) connected to freeze-drying unit (centre) and freeze-thaw unit (right).

    HOF innovative green refrigeration technologies for  enhanced sustainability

    CryoBlizzard principle: Air-based refrigeration system is based on use of a Miral Intex turbo unit that compresses low pressure low temperature air into high pressure high temperature air that is used via intercooler to power turbo expander to convert it into low pressure ultra-low temperature air.

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