Vector Refrigeration Units now offer quieter diesel-powered trailer units

Oct. 31, 2011
Based on a recent company study

There are plenty of sound reasons for considering the hybrid Vector trailer refrigeration units from Carrier Transicold, and now sound itself is another. Designed for efficiency and low maintenance, Vector units are also North America’s quietest diesel-powered trailer refrigeration units, based on recent company testing. Carrier Transicold helps improve global transport and shipping temperature control with a complete line of equipment for refrigerated trucks, trailers and containers, and is a part of UTC Climate, Controls & Security Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corp. 

The Vector 6500 single-temperature unit was tested by Carrier Transicold in accordance with ARI Standard 1120, paired against a competitive unit of comparable capacity equipped with a factory-installed sound-reduction package. When running in high-speed cooling mode, the Vector unit’s sound output measured six decibels quieter than the competitor.

“Putting this into perspective, it would take four Vector units running in high-speed cooling mode to produce the sound volume of a single conventional competitive unit equipped with a noise abatement package,” said Dave Kiefer, Carrier Transicold’s director of marketing and product management. “In the high-speed heating test, the Vector unit was even more impressive,” Kiefer said, explaining that, unlike conventional units, Vector units heat with electric resistance strips, which do not require use of the compressor. In the high-speed heat mode, the Vector unit measured 10 decibels quieter than the competitor, with a sound output that is low enough to be comparable to the decibel range of normal conversation.

Contributing to the Vector unit’s low sound output is its all-electric refrigeration system, which, unlike conventional systems, doesn’t have the numerous mechanical components that contribute to engine and compressor noise. Vector units also take advantage of noise-reducing V-Forcecondenser fans with vortex-suppression technology. With doors designed for acoustic abatement, both the Vector 6500 and its multi-temperature sibling, the Vector 6600MT, include a bottom panel that helps further contain engine sound.

“Hauling operations that are seeking the quietest choice in high-capacity trailer refrigeration systems should consider the Vector units,” Kiefer said. “Although conventional trailer refrigeration systems, including Carrier’s X2 series, have been designed over the years to perform more quietly, the issue of noise is more relevant than ever.”

Less noise improves conditions for drivers in sleeper cabs, and also helps as refrigerated trailers travel through residential neighborhoods going to and from supermarkets, in neighborhoods located around refrigerated distribution centers, or where multiple refrigerated trailers congregate.

“When parked during loading and unloading, Vector units can be plugged into an outlet and powered electrically, enabling them to deliver full-capacity cooling without using the diesel engine. This ‘standby operation’ drops the sound output by another three decibels in cooling mode. In heating mode, when the compressor operation is not required, the unit is virtually silent,” Kiefer said.

When in standby operation, the Vector units eliminate engine emissions from the refrigeration unit, conserving fuel, and reducing operating costs by 40 to 70 percent, depending on the price of fuel and electricity.

For more information about Vector 6500 and Vector 6600MT hybrid units, or the engineless standby-only Vector 5100 all-electric refrigeration unit, turn to the experts within the Carrier Transicold dealer network or visit

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