The air conditioning equipment segment of the Chinese multinational Midea Carrier, with a plant in Canoas, in the Metropolitan Region of Porto Alegre, is seeking to expand the market and increase the number of exports to other Latin countries. At the end of August, the group launched the CRAH line (Computer Room Air Handler), a specific product for cooling Data Centers. According to the manager of the Rio Grande do Sul factory, Ranieri Calza, this could generate more jobs at the factory in the coming years and consolidate the presence of products produced on Rio Grande do Sul soil in other Latin American countries and even in the United States.
“People’s lives are digital and increasingly connected. For the Data Center to operate, it needs to be refrigerated 24 hours a day, every day. That’s why we developed CRAH”, explained Calza.
The factory, which is the only one in Latin America with the capacity to produce commercial refrigerators of this size, relies on technology and automation to produce products that are increasingly customized to customer needs. “Our challenge is to be an efficient factory capable of serving hotels, cinemas and, now, Data Centers. All of this needs robots and digitalization”, he stated.
In general, the two CRAH models, CRAH Springer TECH and Fan Wall Springer TECH, which can be combined into up to 32 units, totaling capacities of 4,640 KW and 6,720 KW, respectively, air-condition Data Center equipment that, without refrigeration, cannot operate properly. Furthermore, in cases of power outage, the secondary power system keeps the Data Center operational. “It is a very strong energy generation due to the amount of data. If it is not conditioned, they [Data Centers] they don’t work”, explained Calza. To achieve this, the CRAH operates in harmony with another Midea equipment, the chiller condenser, which can be applied for other commercial purposes.
According to a list made by Data Center Magazine in 2021, Brazil is the main data center market in Latin America. The increase in technological demand and the growth of cloud computing are some of the factors driving this market in the country. Currently, the production of the Canoas is 90% destined to supply the national marketbut the new product is also an opportunity for foreign market expansion, according to the manager.
“We already export to the Caribbean, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico. We even produce in different tensions and taking into account the specificities of each country. We are also investing in exporting CRAH to the Data Centers market, we expect to gain market with this innovation”, projected Calza. The equipment was officially presented during the Open Factory Data Centers event, held last August 29, at the Midea Carrier factory in Canoas and which brought together more than 200 participants who make up some of the main players in the market.
Sustainability is on the company’s radar
To minimize the environmental impacts caused by the industry, the plant is investing in solutions with greater production efficiency. “We are investing in the production of refrigerant gases with less impact on the ozone layer and the greenhouse effect, it is our strategy”, guaranteed the manager of Midea Carrier’s regional region in Rio Grande do Sul, Ranieri Calza.
According to him, the Midea plant in Canoas has approximately 500 employees and produces around 250 thousand refrigerated tons (or around 25 thousand products per year) and is prepared to become more sustainable. The idea is that, by next year, the factory will have zero disposal of waste generated at the unit to landfill. “One of our focuses is to be connected with ESG practices,” he stated. Furthermore, he highlighted a tributary treatment plant. “We have a controlled and clean process from start to finish.”