Pavao Jerković, Frigo Plus (left), and Marc Chasserot, ATMOsphere.
Pavao Jerković, Frigo Plus (left), and Marc Chasserot, ATMOsphere.

Croatian Manufacturer Frigo Plus to Expand Production Capacity to Meet Growing Heat Pump Demand

According to CTO Pavao Jerković, an EU-mandated phase out of fossil fuel boilers is driving demand for heat pumps.

With EU regulations driving the phase out of fossil fuel-based boilers across the bloc by 2040, Croatian HVAC&R manufacturer Frigo Plus has said it plans to “significantly” expand its production capacity to meet the growing demand for heat pumps in Europe.

According to Pavao Jerković, CTO at Frigo Plus, the company views the legislation as a clear opportunity to further develop its portfolio of propane (R290) heat pumps, building on its 16 years of experience producing propane-based chillers.

“We used part of the design [and] construction from the chiller technology, but we [adapted it] for heat pumps,” Jerković told Marc Chasserot, CEO and Co-Founder of ATMOsphere, in a recent interview. ATMOsphere is the publisher of NaturalRefrigerants.com.

As stipulated in the EU Energy Performance of Buildings Directive, the gradual transition away from fossil fuel-powered boilers begins in January 2025 with the end of subsidies for standalone boilers.

In addition to developing new product lines, Frigo Plus is also focused on improving the performance of its existing technologies, for example, producing compressors that have the same capacity as previous models but with a smaller footprint, Jerković added.

Beyond propane, Frigo Plus also produces CO2 (R744) racks for commercial applications, with a focus on supplying Croatia’s supermarket chains.

“Four years ago, we finished the development of subcritical and transcritical CO2 units,” Jerković told Chasserot. “We are covering up to 150kW [42.7TR] cooling capacity across medium- and low-temperature [applications]. We chose this range because it is what we expect to be requested from the Croatian market.”

Around 95% of Frigo Plus’s product lines are natural refrigerant-based units, and the company sells its products across Europe, including in key markets such as Denmark, France and Norway.

As well as manufacturing products under the Frigo Plus brand, the company also produces units for German OEM Secon, which co-owns the Croatian manufacturer. According to Jerković, around 70% of the units Frigo Plus manufactures are for Secon. Secon received the ATMO Approved Natural Refrigerants Label for the third time earlier this year.

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