Sterling Pharma Solutions and KGM Refrigeration partner to install sustainable chilling technology for API manufacturing

By Annabel Kartal-Allen | Published: 24-Jan-2024

Sterling Pharma and KGM refrigeration have announced their partnership in a project to install a sustainable industrial ammonia-based cooling plant for use at API’s manufacturing plant in Cramlington, UK.

Sterling Pharma Solutions, a global contract development and manufacturing organisation, today announced the results of a pilot project to assess the use of new, ultra-low charge ammonia chilling technology. Sterling initially installed a 150kW chiller at its API manufacturing plant in Cramlington, UK, which over the course of a 15-month trial demonstrated quantifiable energy cost savings of 65% compared to other chillers and will now look to roll out the technology across its global network.

Partnering with KGM Refrigeration, a UK-based independent company with established experience in providing refrigeration solutions in a wide range of industrial sectors, Sterling installed KGM’s first-generation chiller. This reduces the volumes of ammonia used by 75% against traditional ammonia-based cooling methods. When combined with a synchronous reluctance IE5 motor, this solution offers high levels of energy efficiency and lower costs. The technology was installed and commissioned in August 2022 and since then has run for over 5,000 hours. This allows KGM to test the equipment in a real-life manufacturing scenario to gather data, validate results and optimise the design of the unit.

“The pilot programme has also demonstrated the significant financial advantages attainable when adopting this new chilling technology, which we now plan to roll out across our network of facilities, as and where appropriate.” said James Rogers, Site Head at Sterling’s Cramlington site.

First opened in 1969, Sterling’s 42-acre Cramlington site is the company’s global headquarters and currently employs over 630 people, supporting the development of APIs from development through to clinical trial manufacture and commercial supply.


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