TechNet-21 - Forum

This forum provides a place for members to ask questions, share experiences, coordinate activities, and discuss recent developments in immunization.

Discussions tagged Refrigerator / freezer

SDD freezers that maintain -10C and below


I am brand new to TechNet-21 so this will be my first posting. 

I am trying to find an SDD (Solar Direct Drive) freezer which will maintain -10C and below. The product I need to store in Nigeria is surfactant (injected into the lungs of premature babies with collapsed lungs to give them life) which must be kept at that cold temperature to maintain a shelf life of 3 years. The electricity supply throughout the country in Nigeria is erratic and undependable, thus I would ...

UNICEF/WHO guidance on Decommissioning and safe disposal of CCE now available in ARABIC and RUSSIAN

Dear TechNet-21 community,

Further to the publication of the English and French versions of the Decommissioning and safe disposal of cold chain equipment guidance earlier this year (available here, we are glad to share with you that the Arabic and Russian versions of the document are now available in the TechNet-21 Resource Library.

To access these documents, please click on the following li...

Live-Tweeting from the PQS Manufacturer Consultation on Tuesday, July 10th!

Dear TechNet-21 Colleagues,

WHO PQS will be engaging with a selected group of PQS product manufacturers on Tuesday, July 10th to discuss and agree on a path forward for some significant proposed changes to immunization cold chain equipment standards. Although this is a closed event, the PQS Team and TechNet-21 are partnering to bring you exclusive insights from the meeting and I will be guest tweeting from the TechNet-21 Twitter account, sharing highlights and pictures from this first...

Powering Auxiliary Loads in SDD Systems – Energy Harvesting: Is It the Best Alternative?

One of the beneficial features of SDD refrigerators is its relative simplicity. Electrically two wires from the solar array are directly connected to the compressor. This simplicity minimizes problems in the field and simplifies repairs. Energy harvesting technology introduces a great deal of electronic complexity and the complexity increases as a larger percent of the available energy is harvested. In the US the primary mode of failure of new refrigerators is the electronic circuitry. In the...

SPOTLIGHT: Installation of SDD Refrigerators in Colombia

Dear TechNet-21 communty,

I would like share with you some pictures of the installation process of 37 SDD that we are doing in Colombia.

Best regards.


Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) tool for cold chain equipment version 1.5 now available

We are happy to announce the latest version of the Total Cost of Ownership tool for cold chain equipment (v1.5) is now available to download and use. If you have been using an earlier version of the tool, please download the latest version from the link below.  

Version 1.5 includes options to add Service Bundle quotes for CCEOP procurement which will overwrite installation cost assumptions.  Version 1.5 also features enhanced warranty comparisons that reflect the value of standard wa...

Off-Grid Portable Vaccine Refrigeration

I am developing an off-grid backpack with an inbuilt removal battery powered (8hrs) portable refrigerator that is approx 1.5 litre in size and can transport 2 blood bags. The off-grid backpack has 48hrs of battery supply to the portable refrigerator, however, it is designed to be recharged daily. Our vision is to provide a waterproof backpack that has in-built refrigeration that can provide additional electricity for lighting and other appliances that maybe be useful in the field and that can...

Temperature monitoring devices and Thermostat for vaccine refrigeration system

Dear Technet members,

I would like to share my thoughts on the temperature monitoring devices and thermostal for vaccine refrigeration system.

In the early days of EPI, temperature of the refrigerator was measured and displayed by a simple analogue thermometer which was either a bi-metal or stem type alcohol thermometer.  Twice daily the health worker records these temperature on the temperature monitoring sheet and posted on the door of the fridge.  Filled temperature records...

Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) tool version 1.4 available now

We are happy to announce the latest version of the Total Cost of Ownership tool for cold chain equipment (v1.4) is now available to download and use. If you have been using an earlier version of the tool, please download the latest version from the link below.  

Version 1.4 includes filters for CCEOP eligible equipment, as well as filters for refrigerator/freezer combination devices.  The latest version of the TCO tool contains PQS pre-qualified equipment as of May 2017.


“VaccineSafe” Vs Conventional Ice-Lined Refrigerator (ILR).

Dear viewers - sharing the following for needful

Universally it is very well known that vaccination is one of the most cost effective public health programme from control to eradication of Vaccine Preventable diseases.

Public sector is provided with proper cold chain equipments, periodic training blended with monitoring & supportive supervision. National Immunization Schedule (NIS) is expanding; included IPV, Rota, MR, JE and Pneumococcal is the next candidate vaccine. Vaccine...

When to consider solar, based on hours of mains/generator electricity available each day

I’ve been reading with great interest the most recent issue of Vaccine, which is dedicated to “Building Next-Generation Immunization Supply Chains”.

I particularly enjoyed the following article but was surprised to read that the authors identified a discrepancy between WHO PQS and Gavi Cold Chain Equipment Optimization Platform guidance relating...

New reports on harvesting unused energy from SDD installations

To ensure that solar direct drive (SDD) appliances can keep vaccines at acceptable temperatures continuously, the installed photovoltaic array often produces excess power that is not used by the primary cooling load and this excess power generally goes unutilized.

If this power is to be used, the primary SDD appliance load must be prioritized above any other load. WHO and other organizations have been working to define how this can be done safely and reliably. In support of WHO/PQS, P...

Ice-Lined Refrigerator & Freezer

Dear Colleagues,

As known that Ice-lined refrigerators are the best choice wherever there is at least 8 hours electricity a day, but what about producing ice-packs for immunization session (e.g. outreach sessions) under the same supply of electricity (=< 8hrs)?

What will be the better decision to make here? maybe consider the combined icelined refrigerator/ freezer (not many options are available on WHO PQS devices catalogue) , or consider a stand- alone deep freezer for ice p...

New case studies on SDD vaccine refrigeration projects

WHO and UNICEF have just published a new evidence brief on solar direct-drive (SDD) vaccine refrigerators and freezers. It includes case studies from Tanzania, Colombia and Kenya, as well as an overview of SDD technology and how to make sure that SDD technology is the right choice. Here's the link:

This is the document summary:


What is the distance refrigerator should be from wall?

Dear Technet Followers:

Is there a universal recommendation for the distance a refrigerator should be from the wall. I have seen 1 foot, 10cm, 300mm, and 50mm on different documents from different partners.




CCE Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) tool version 1.3 available now

Happy new year all,

We are happy to announce that the latest version of the Total Cost of Ownership tool for cold chain equipment (v1.3) is now available to download and use. The latest version has a few minor changes to the presentation of data as well as the latest PQS pre-qualified equipment as of December 2016.

Please download the latest version (in English or French) for the most up to date products and pricing.


Measurement of Condensation

We are working with ILRs. While daily operations, it was found that there is formation of water droplets inside the device. We want to measure the amount of condensation taking place inside the device in a day. We also tried to calculate the Dew Point Temperature but not much useful.

Kindly suggest some method or way to measure the condensation.




RCW50EG field perfomance problems

At B Medical Systems we have received lately more and more complaints about RCW50EG, absorption type vaccine refrigerator / ice pack freezer, that stopped working or never started working correctly. The largest complaint came from the EPI in Kenya with 200 X RCW50EG not working. The RCW50EG and the smaller version of it, the RCW42EG, have always been known as excellent equipment in the cold chain, and never had any issues, therefore initialy we thought it must just have been wrong use, settin...

High temperature freezers

Knowing the problem of vaccines being frozen because of too cold ice-packs. What about freezers that does not get colder that minus 5'C


Looking for more information on SDD vaccine refrigerator performance in the field

Dear TechNet members, I'm putting together a document on the performance of solar direct-drive (SDD) vaccine refrigerators and would like to request your assistance. If you have experience of SDD projects in the field I would be very grateful if you could share your thoughts on how well they have performed (particularly in relation to other types of vaccine refrigerator), problems that were encountered, solutions identified, and any other observations you might have.

More than 20 ...

Experience about solarchill in Colombia


I like to share with you in this space a video about the instalation, basic maintenance and operation of one of the solar equipments with PQS that are installed in my country (Colombia), nowadays we have 300 equipments in operation.

Best regards


Vaccine Storage in Cold Climates

Most ice-lined refrigerators in India are fully functional at 5 - 45 degrees Celsius (ie, they are able to maintain an internal temperature of 2-8 degrees Celsius when the external temperatures are between 5 and 45 degrees Celsius). Some states of India have an extremely cold climate during winters (for example, the areas of Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Sikkim that are in the Himalayas) and so they are prone to high rates of vaccine freezing.

I am sure this is a problem experie...

Two collections of WHO equipment maintenance resources (user and technician)

Thanks to the flexibility of the TechNet-21 website, I can share two older (circa 1985) collections of densely technical and highly practical equipment maintenance documents developed by WHO using the TechNet Resource Library (TRL). Once only available in hardcopy or in a digital corner of the online PATH Vaccine Resource Library, these materials are now available in two TRL collections:


Cold Chain Equipment Optimization Platform - Technology Guide

Dear friends, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance is very pleased to present the Cold Chain Equipment ‘Technology Guide’, to support the appropriate selection of modern, efficient and reliable technologies. Download the guide here.

Identifying the most appropriate equipment choices for each health facility is key to help ensure more facilities have adequate cold chain capacity, and that more ...

Uganda Equipment Failure Investigation Report

In cooperation with the Uganda Ministry of Health, PATH recently conducted a pilot study to document equipment failures in the Uganda National Expanded Programme on Immunization cold chain.

Due to our use of purposeful sampling to locate a subset of failed cold chain equipment in Uganda, conclusions about predicted failures cannot be drawn from our study report. However, after learning of the failures, one manufacturer (B. Medical) has agreed to replace the equipment assessed.

Remote Temperature Monitoring Data for Cold Chain Maintenance

Dear TechNet Colleagues,


I would like to share with you a report on our latest cold chain maintenance investigation in Mozambique: "Why Fridges Fail Part 2: RTM Data for Maintenance".

We are beginning to document how remote temperature monitoring data and dashboards can be used by maintenance technicians to significantly improve cold chain performance.

This assessment follows up on the randomized control trial conducted in 2014-2015 with Village Reach, PATH, ...

Universal, hybrid refrigerator for vaccines?

Among the TECHNET postings on cold-chain equipment there are embedded remarks pointing towards the need to make vaccine refrigeration simpler and less expensive to procure, more responsive to energy changes and easier to use and maintain. For example, to choose a refrigerator now current WHO, UNICEF and GAVI guides require that you make equipment choices according to energy availability and quality conditions. But in practice, energy availability and quality are changing, they do not remain s...

Performance evaluation of solar adsorption cooling systems for vaccine preservation in Sub-Saharan Africa

In case this new article published in Applied Energy is of interest

An intermittent solar adsorption refrigerator can supply cold needed in third world countries, especially for vaccine and medicine preservation. This paper investigated theoretically the potential of solar adsorption refrigerators in Sub-Saharan Afric...

Error in suggested sizing method for SDD systems

I was recently looking at the “System Sizing tool 3/3” in a 2DI3 “Technical evaluation and Methodology” a unicef publication. The publication originated from a 2DI3 SDD industry meeting.

The sizing method prescribed is based on the premise that “the daily potential solar energy supply is calculated as the number of sunshine hours 1000 W/m2 multiplied with the corrected power output.” The compressor of an SDD refrigerator requires about 70 watts to run and start. When the output of the...

Reorganizing Nigeria’s vaccine supply chain reduces need for additional storage facilities, but more storage is required

Interesting paper on system design in Nigeria from Health Affairs.


One of the major problems facing Nigeria’s vaccine supply chain is the lack of adequate vaccine storage facilities. Despite the introduction of solar-powered refrigerators and the use of new tools to monitor supply levels, this problem persists. Using data on vaccine supply for 2011–14 from Nigeria’s National Primary Health Care Development Agency, we created a simulation model to explore the effects o...

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