Union Industries revolutionary Eiger Door continues to break ice

eiger-door-blue-on-whiteUnion Industries’ revolutionary Eiger Door continues to break ice as the most innovative Hi-Speed Freezer Door on the market.

Launched in 2003, the Eiger Door has quickly become the cold store door of choice across the cold storage and distribution industries.

Built upon the success and fundamental engineering excellence of Union’s Matadoor Range of Hi-Speed Doors, the Eiger Door overcomes the most common problems faced by freezer operators.

As with many industrial doors, freezer doors can also experience high volumes of traffic and, as a result, can succumb to damage from forklift trucks, low-level loaders and pallet trucks. In common with the Matadoor range, the Eiger Door features Union’s proven ‘Crash-Out & Auto-Reset’ facility, which is a first for a freezer door. This facility includes a Bottom Beam break-out device, which minimises the effect of impact damage, allowing the door to continue working even if the bottom leading edge is hit.

With product moving regularly in and out of cold stores and freezers, operators face the challenge of maintaining a consistent internal freezer temperature. The Eiger Door combats this issue through two key benefits;  Firstly, its fast operating speed of 1.6 metres per second virtually eradicates the opportunity for the ingress of warm moist air as well as preventing the escape of cold air.

In addition, the Eiger Door’s operation also eliminates the build-up of ice around the doorway, which is caused by the freezer trying to keep a regulated temperature when the doorway is left open.

keystone-1The Eiger Door also incorporates a ‘twin-skin’ door blade system, into which is fed dry, re-circulated air to keep the door free of frost and ice to ensure uninterrupted operation.

Isobel Schofield, Managing Director of Union Industries, said: “We are proud to say, to our knowledge, there isn’t another cold store door like the Eiger available in the UK. It has proven to be one of the most important innovations in the freezer market for a number of years.”

“For some time our customers had complained about the difficulties they were experiencing with the conventional freezer or insulated doors they had no option but to use on their freezer openings. These, they claimed, were either totally ineffective or slow in operation. Of greatest concern, however, were the huge repair bills they had to absorb every time the doors were hit.”

“Eventually we succumbed to pressure from one of our most valued customers and one of the ‘Big 5’ supermarket operators. We decided that maybe with a fresh approach, a touch of lateral thinking and without the baggage of preconception to halt Union’s considerable free flow of imagination, we may just come up with a winner.”

In its short history, Eiger Doors have found homes at major cold store operations across the UK including large supermarkets and distributors such as Keystone Distribution UK, 3663 Foodservice and Reed Boardall Cold Storage Ltd.

Recently, Union Industries has installed Eiger Doors at West Coast Sea Products in Scotland and also at Keystone’s huge development at Buncefield in Hemel Hempstead.

west-coast-sea-productsAt West Coast Sea Products in Kirkcudbright, the Eiger Door is installed on the on the -20°C Freezer Side of the opening to the Production Area. Here it operates just as happily as it would on the more normally specified ambient side, requiring the addition of specially-designed insulated jackets to prevent any warmth in the system migrating into the freezer from the columns and motor and arctic cables for the wiring runs to cope with the sub-zero temperatures.

Processing around 75 percent of the UK’s scallop production, the Kirkcudbright based company selected the Eiger Door to replace a sliding door, which provided little insulation and required regular maintenance and repair, incurring high on-going costs.

“We have been impressed with the efficiency of the Eiger Door, both in its ability to support temperature control and through the fluidity of its operation, which really benefits productivity,” said Bruce Morin, Chief Engineer for West Coast Sea Products.

Union has a long relationship with Keystone Distribution UK and was the company’s first choice when it began rebuilding its distribution centre in Hertfordshire following the famous Buncefield Oil Dept blaze in 2005.

The purpose-built 22,800sq m facility supplies 1,200 McDonald’s restaurants throughout the UK and has benefitted from the installation of 14 Eiger Doors and 11 of Union’s popular Bulldoors on ambient and chilled environments.

In addition to providing the huge benefits in terms of energy savings, freezer efficiency and low maintenance costs, the Eiger Doors also form a new concept at Keystone by providing airlocks between freezer areas.

Mark Weller, Chief Engineer at Keystone, said: “When it came to building the new distribution centre we wanted state-of-the art equipment and facilities. We knew from using Eiger Doors in the past that they offered excellent quality and performance, along with outstanding reliability and flexibility.”

union industries   tel: 0113 244 8393   www.unionindustries.co.uk