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Energy Consumption and Freezer Management to be Discussed Nov. 21

UMass Chan Medical School employees who use an ultra-low temperature freezer for research or clinical purposes are encouraged to attend a “Lunch and Learn” about freezer management on Nov. 21 from noon to 1 p.m. in the Faculty Conference Room.

Pizza and soft drinks will be provided. The event is co-sponsored by the Growing Green team and the Department of Environmental Health & Safety.

“There’s a lot we can do to reduce energy consumption and extend the life of the equipment through better freezer management,” said Suzanne Wood, program manager for sustainability and auxiliary services at UMass Chan.

If you plan to attend please let us know by emailing at:

The Medical School has 584 ultra-low temperature freezers that are typically set at 80 degrees below 0o, and another 809 standard freezers set at 20 below. Combined, they draw a significant energy load. It is estimated that one ultra-low freezer unit consumes as much electricity each day as a single-family home.

Among the topics to be discussed will be best-practices for managing freezer inventory, temperature tuning, and the protocol for defrosting a freezer. The goals of the program are to reduce electrical consumption by 30 percent, generate less heat in the laboratory environment, and extend the mechanical life of the units.

Wood will also introduce the “Freezer Challenge,” a competition among academic and commercial laboratories around the world to improve freezer management and reduce energy consumption.

The freezer program is the second in a series of Lunch and Learn events focused on sustainability in the laboratory setting. If you would like to suggest other topics, attend the  Nov. 21 session or email