Energy Impacts of ULT Freezers
A typical ULT freezer consumes about the same amount of energy as an average home in New England - just to be plugged in! This doesn't account for the added heat load these freezers expel that the building's heating-ventilation-air-conditioning (HVAC) system needs to then accommodate. That's approximately $1,000/year per freezer! Costs increase further with the age of the freezer, poor maintenance, ice/snow build-up, and lower temperatures.
Raising the temperature of your freezer by just 10°C to -70°C will save 10% on energy costs. Did you know that most biological samples do not require long term storage temperatures below -70°C? In fact, the modern day -86°C used to be a -70°C not too long ago.
Why are manufacturers making -86°C freezers? Because compressor technology has advanced such that it is possible -- not because it is necessary. Many institutions have reset their freezers to -70°C to save on energy.
To learn more about what is safe to store at -70°C, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.