ATMOsphere Reapproves Natural Refrigerants Label for Novum

The ATMO Approved label is a global gold standard highlighting best-in-class manufacturers and contractors of natural refrigerant systems and components.

ATMOsphere, a global market accelerator of clean cooling and heating solutions, and publisher of, has reapproved the ATMO Approved Natural Refrigerants Label for Irish propane (R290) cabinet manufacturer Novum.

Novum was originally approved for the label in February 2023.

ATMOsphere (formerly shecco) launched the label in June 2022 as a global gold standard highlighting best-in-class manufacturers of natural refrigerant systems and components around the world. Labels were also approved in 2023 for SCM Frigo, M&M Carnot, Zudek, MIRAI Intex, Novum and Temprite. In 2024, GTS, Nihon Netsugen Systems, Refra, Zero-C and Ceptek have been approved, Fenagy has been reapproved, and Secon, Güntner, TEKO, M&M Carnot, Zudek and Temprite have been reapproved for the second time.

In November 2023, ATMOsphere opened label registration for 2024 with a new category for contractors and installers who accelerate the adoption of natural refrigerant-based cooling and heating solutions. To date, contractors Equans Kältetechnik, SURE Solutions and General Refrigeration have been approved for the label.

“We are delighted to be fully ATMO approved,” said Jim Greene, CEO of Novum. “This label serves as a powerful accelerator in the adoption of natural refrigerants, which are crucial in addressing global climate issues.”

“Refrigerant management is recognized by Project Drawdown as the leading solution to global warming,” Greene added. “The Kigali amendment to the Montreal Protocol, endorsed by over 100 countries, targets harmful HFCs and champions the adoption of eco-friendly natural refrigerants like R290 — a standard in all Novum freezers, aiding our commitment to combat climate change.”

The ATMOsphere label is designed to help qualified manufacturers to market products to new customers and regions in the natural refrigerants marketplace, including products using CO2 (R744), ammonia (R717) and propane. In addition, the label is meant to help end users identify best-in-class suppliers.

Once approved, companies can place the ATMOsphere Natural Refrigerant Label in a myriad of places, such as directly on products, marketing material, email signatures, company pitches and trade show booths.

“The label will be very visible in the global marketplace, and companies can take advantage of this to strengthen their brand,” noted Marc Chasserot, ATMOsphere’s Founder and CEO.

“By being global and multi-application, this label can help to create trust across the new applications and regions,” added Chasserot. “We want to use this multi-year label process to help move the market to cleaner solutions with natural refrigerant solutions over time.”

Based in Dublin, Novum was founded in 1959. Its R290 LEAP cabinets, like the Grand Cayman and Panama Green series, offer high energy efficiency, typically delivering a 20% reduction in energy consumption compared to HFC units, the company says. The cabinets are equipped with “thawless” technology, meaning easier defrost cycles and no thaw cycles at all. This promotes a stable freezer case temperature, reducing food loss.

Novum’s LEAP units feature hermetically self-contained cassettes with 65g (2.5oz) of refrigerant. Easily removable, the cassettes reduce the risk of leaks in store and also allow easy maintenance without costly downtime, the company notes. This year, a new Leclerc store in Ville-la-Grand, France, began serving as Novum’s real-world showroom for its LEAP lineup of propane chest freezers and cabinets.

In November 2021, Novum opened a new 100,000ft2 (9,290m2) manufacturing facility for its LEAP R290 refrigerated plug-in cabinets in Dublin.

Three pillars

To qualify for an ATMOsphere label, manufacturers have to demonstrate excellence across three pillars:

1) company vision;

2) customer satisfaction (measured via testimonials from multiple end users confirming the reliability, performance and service of these companies and products); and

3) measurable impact.

HungWen Hsu, DAI and Technical Leader for RT-Mart, a hypermarket chain in Taiwan that is a customer of Novum’s showcases, said their performance has been very good. “The display is very beautiful, and it doesn’t frost,” he added. “The maintenance is very good as well.”

New criteria

The 2024 label also includes training criteria for the first time for new applications and renewals. “We want to recognize a proactive approach to training customers, partners, employees and suppliers to ensure we not only have the best-in-class equipment but the best-in-class installation and maintenance of these systems,” Chasserot said.

Another 2024 label criterion centers around per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), such as trifluoroacetic acid (TFA).

Recent research found significant levels of TFA – formed by the atmospheric breakdown of certain HFO and HFC refrigerants – in dust, drinking water and human blood in a study of households in Indiana (U.S.). The study characterized TFA as being part of the PFAS chemical family. TFA and TFE (another PFAS linked to HFOs) have pathways to forming HFC-23, a super potent greenhouse gas (GWP 14,600).

“The 2024 label criteria around PFAS acknowledges what companies are doing to ensure they are PFAS-free,” Chasserot said.

“ATMO Approved companies have the vision and leadership required to navigate the market today and help [companies] move away from PFAS and global-warming synthetic alternatives,” he added.

Additional new benefits added to the 2024 ATMO label include:

  • an annual report for environmental, social and governance (ESG) investors;
  • end-user tours at major trade shows to meet approved companies;
  • exclusive webinar targeting end users, consultants and contractors; and
  • end-user case studies, showcasing best practices.

ATMOsphere has been active in the natural refrigerant space for nearly 20 years. During this time, the company has:

  • published dozens of natural refrigerant-related market reports on market players, technologies and solutions worldwide across multiple applications;
  • hosted over 60 international natural refrigerant conferences, bringing together thousands of experts and hundreds of speakers over nearly 15 years, covering all the latest trends and players;
  • written thousands of articles reporting on natural refrigerant companies and products in the industry; and
  • sent representatives to hundreds of trade shows around the world, meeting with natural refrigerant experts face-to-face (in addition to countless individual meetings outside official events).

“We feel that, as an independent player with a global mindset and a global presence across all natural refrigerants and multiple applications, we are very well suited to provide this level of approval for the label,” explained Chasserot.

“This label serves as a powerful accelerator in the adoption of natural refrigerants, which are crucial in addressing global climate issues.”

Jim Greene, CEO of Novum

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