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Ultra-Low Temperature Freezer Manufacturers

Are you in the market for an ultra-low (ULT) temperature freezer? Not sure where to look? Finding major equipment for a laboratory facility isn’t the easiest. Living in an era that is shifting toward sustainability and wanting to lessen environmental impact doesn’t make it any easier. Did you know that the National Institute of Health has initiated the NIH Freezer Challenge? This is just one example of the efforts being made to help a laboratory prioritize sustainability and minimize its carbon footprint in the long-term. In this article, we’re going to review some ultra-low temperature freezer manufacturers and some of the specifications, so you can decide which will be most sustainable and suitable for your lab.

What Are Ultra-Low Temperature Freezers?

Ultra-low temperature freezers are freezers that typically range in temperature from -45°C (-49°F) to -86°C (-122°F). They are most often found in hospitals, biomedical engineering facilities, and blood blanks. They house biological samples of blood, semen, bacteria, viruses, tissues, and cell samples. Ultra-low temperature freezers range in size and style to meet a wide range of lab needs. You will find small countertop models, benchtop, undercounter or chest freezers, and high-quality upright freezers. 

With all these different variations, it’s important to think of every main consideration when in the market for one. They’re a big investment, and you want your freezer to serve your lab perfectly and endure the test of time. Choosing the right ultra-low temperature freezer can be a big decision, so let’s review some of the main things you need to keep in mind before making that purchase.

What You Should Consider in Your Next ULT Freezer

Space and Orientation – Firstly, the placement of the freezer in your lab is going to determine the size you will need. You should begin with finding the appropriate space—knowing where it will go beforehand will help you determine the size of the freezer you can actually purchase. A small lab that has only enough space for a countertop model should not look into acquiring an undercounter freezer. And it’s not just about the space; the orientation of the equipment will come in handy as well. You are going to want something with an ergonomic design that offers an excellent control system. Make sure the freezer orientation is optimal for when the doors are open. 

Storage – Storage capacity is a must. You actually do not want an excess of storage space as it can alter the effectiveness of the freezing. On the other hand, you also do not want to run out of room. Be realistic with your needs. It might help to have a current inventory of things you’ll be storing so you don’t run into any surprises.

Reliability – Reliability is the next thing to consider. How do you know if a manufacturer creates a reliable piece of machinery? Look at their track history and supplier validation! Most manufacturers will provide the history of a piece of equipment if you ask. Ask your colleagues as well; you know and trust them and they might have special experience or wisdom to lend you. Your colleagues know which companies are worth their salt.

Temperature – Temperature uniformity is equally as important. You do not want to see temperatures all over the place, especially if there is a significant shift after opening the door or lid. Do you need an automatic defrost system? Make sure that is just as uniform as keeping the temperature regulated. Temperature controls on a touch-screen temperature display are very helpful. 

Energy Efficiency and Sustainability – Remember the efficiency challenges we mentioned earlier? You want an energy-efficient piece of machinery. When you factor in the costs of running an ultra-low temperature freezer, something that doesn’t drive the electric bill over the top is going to be appreciated. You don’t want to run up your bills or have your lab amass an excessive environmental impact.

Top Ultra-Low Temperature Freezer Manufacturers

Now that you have learned a bit about the freezers, now is the time to think about who to buy from. The internet, while vast with all kinds of helpful knowledge and know-how, can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. To help narrow down some of the choices out there, here are some of our suggestions for Ultra-Low Temperature Freezer manufacturers:

Nuaire

Nuaire is a company that found its way into the business in 1971. The National Institute of Health (NIH) was in desperate need of a heavy-duty safety cabinet to meet its needs. Max Peters went to work in his garage and came up with Nuaire and won the contract with NIH. Today, Nuaire still manufactures equipment for use in labs and healthcare centers around the country. 

The Blizzard™ HC VIP NU-99338J

  • Overview: This Blizzard freezer prioritizes reliable performance and focuses on storage of cancer cells, cord blood, T-cells, stem cells, and organ/tissue samples. It features eco-friendly hydrocarbon that has low emissions while still maintaining optimal performance and maximum storage.
  • Orientation: Upright Freezer
  • 2-inch Box Capacity: 96
  • Exterior Dimensions: 32.0” W x 35.2” D x 72.7” H  
  • Interior Dimensions: 18.3” W x 24.8” D x 45.9” H
  • Temperature Range: 10-32°C
  • Volume Capacity: 11.9 cubic ft. (388-Liter)
  • Defrost Type: Manual
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

Blizzard HC VIP NU-99420J

  • Overview: This environmentally friendly ultra-low temperature freezer features hydrocarbon refrigerants that are non-toxic and non-ozone depleting, minimizing your total cost of ownership as it reduces energy consumption. Designed for maximum storage, the freezer is ergonomic and includes a self-checking diagnostic system.
  • Orientation: Chest freezer and accessed from the top.
  • 2-inch Box Capacity: 27
  • Temperature Range: -86°C
  • Volume Capacity: 14.8 cubic ft. (420-Liter)
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

Eppendorf

Eppendorf is a leader in life sciences and has been around since 1945. Originally founded in Hamburg, Germany, Eppendorf has transcended their borders to now serve a global market. With locations in 26 different countries, Eppendorf specializes in the development and sale of lab instruments, services for liquid-samples, cell handling, and consumables. They have a wide range of lab equipment, including ultra-low temperature freezers. Let’s take a look at a few of their most popular:

The Eppendorf CryoCube® F740

  • Overview: High-quality, full stainless steel freezer with an increased capacity designed to store more samples with ultimate security. Made ergonomically and supports optimal workflow and energy use. Touchscreen display.
  • Orientation: Upright freezer with left/right handles.
  • Maximum Power Consumption: 10,500 W
  • Exterior Dimensions: Not listed.
  • Temperature Range: -50°C to -86°C
  • Volume Capacity:  740 L (26.1 cubic ft.)
  • Average Cost: $21,000

Innova® U101

  • Overview: The Innova ULT freezer combines classic insulation foam with a vacuum insulation in order to provide durable and long-lasting ULT technology. The Innovas are ideal for a smaller lab or facility and fits below a bench and can be stackable. The interior is stainless steel for easy maintenance and has a powder-coated exterior.
  • Orientation: Upright freezer with left/right handles.
  • Maximum Power Consumption: 7,400 W
  • Exterior Dimensions: 90 W x 56.6 D cm  
  • Temperature Range: -50°C to -86°C
  • Volume Capacity: 101 L (3.6 cubic ft.)
  • Average Cost: $12,000

CryoCube® FC660

  • Overview: This ULT freezer is a chest freezer that is accessed from the top and for this reason, Eppendorf claims it can keep samples safer than a conventional upright freezer. It’s popular for its energy efficiency, long-term sample preservation, and overall hassle-free usage. With a 2-stage cascade cooling system, these freezers are reliable during all cooling processes.
  • Orientation: Chest freezer and accessed from the top.
  • Maximum Power Consumption: 10,600 W
  • Exterior Dimensions: 207 W x 84 D cm
  • Temperature Range: -50°C to -86°C
  • Volume Capacity: 660 L (23.3 cubic ft.)
  • Average Cost: $18,000

Continental Scientific

Continental Scientific is a Pennsylvania company that began in refrigeration for laboratories and hospitals. They have since grown to include freezers in their lineup and have become leaders in the manufacture and commerce of laboratory equipment since. What sets them apart is their choice to put each piece of equipment through rigorous testing. Before leaving the warehouse, each stainless steel freezer and refrigerator must run for 12 hours straight to test for leaking, uneven temperature, and any other issues that may arise. For a closer look at Continental Scientific, here are a few of their ULT freezers:

Low Temperature Solid Door Laboratory/Pharmacy Freezers

  • Overview: A more modern choice, these freezers have self-closing doors and automatic interior lighting. These freezers have an external digital thermometer and its steel shelves are coated with epoxy for ultimate protection. You can choose between three models: 1 section reach-in, 2 section reach-in, and 3 section reach-in.
  • Orientation: Upright freezers with left/right handles.
  • Defrost Type: Automatic electric.
  • Exterior Dimensions: 
    • 1 section reach-in: 85.5” H x 42” D x 31 ⅝” W
    • 2 section reach-in: 85.5” H x 42” D x 64” W
    • 3 section reach-in: 85.5” H x 42” D x 90” W
  • Temperature Range: -30°C to -18°C
  • Volume Capacity:
    • 1 section reach-in: 65 cubic ft. 
    • 2 section reach-in: 133 cubic ft.
    • 3 section reach-in: 187 cubic ft.
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

Low Temperature Glass Door Laboratory/Pharmacy Freezers

  • Overview: The sibling of the Solid Door Freezers, these freezers instead feature see-through glass doors. These freezers also come in three models: 1 section reach-in, 2 section reach-in, and 3 section reach-in. Made with the same state-of-the-art and modern style, the Low Temperature Glass Door freezers have a thermal expansion valve that oversees the refrigerant flow to allow for quick recovery.
  • Orientation: Upright freezers with left/right handles.
  • Defrost Type: Automatic electric.
  • Exterior Dimensions: 
    • 1 section reach-in: 85.5” H x 42” D x 31 ⅝“ W
    • 2 section reach-in: 85.5” H x 42” D x 64” W
    • 3 section reach-in: 85.5” H x 42” D x 90” W
  • Temperature Range: -24°C to -18°C
  • Volume Capacity:
    • 1 section reach-in: 65 cubic ft. 
    • 2 section reach-in: 133 cubic ft.
    • 3 section reach-in: 187 cubic ft.
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

PHC Corporation of North America Corporate

PHC Corporation of North America Corporate is a subsidiary of PHC Holdings Corporation. You might also know them better as Panasonic Healthcare. They have quite an extensive array of equipment to cover any task or storage need in the healthcare field. Let’s take a look at a few of the Ultra-Low Temperature Freezers they have to offer.

VIP ECO Large Volume Ultra-Low Freezer MDF-DU901VHA-PA

  • Overview: This large volume ULT freezer is ideal for biorepositories and research freezer farms. This VIP ECO freezer has earned ENERGY STAR certification and features a VIP Plus thin-profile insulation composite that maximizes the interior space efficiency and storage. It also features a microprocessor controller that combines freezer operations and data logging functions.
  • Orientation: Upright freezer with left/right handles.
  • ​Capacity:  29.8 cubic ft. (845 L)                                            
  • External Dimensions: 45.3″ W x 34.3″ D x 78.5″ H
  • Temperature Range: -50ºC to -86ºC
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

VIP ECO Natural Refrigerant -86°C Freezer MDF-DU702VHA-PA

  • Overview: This freezer is ENERGY STAR certified and features PHC-engineered heat transfer components. It features a door-mounted LCD touchscreen that provides audible and visual diagnostics and door opening history. You can download temperature logs and analytics that appear as graphs with data collected over time.
  • Orientation: Upright freezer with left/right handles.
  • Capacity: 25.7 cubic ft. (729 L)                                            
  • External: Dimensions: 40.6″ W x 36.8″ D x 78.5″ H
  • Temperature Range: -50ºC to -86ºC
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

TwinGuard Series Ultra-Low Temperature Upright Freezer MDF-DU702VXC-PA

  • Overview: This freezer features a dual cooling system to provide the highest level of sample protection. The two independent refrigeration systems maintain ultra-low temperatures of -86ºC and secures all samples. With an intelligent LCD color display, the TwinGuard Series freezers provide comprehensive audible and visual analytics.
  • Orientation: Upright freezer with left/right handles.
  • Volume Capacity:  25.7 cubic ft. (729 L)                                            
  • External Dimensions: 40.6″ W x 36.8″ D x 78.5″ H
  • Temperature Range: -50ºC to -86ºC
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

Fisher Scientific/Thermo Fisher Scientific

Fisher Scientific/Thermo Fisher Scientific is a name synonymous with long-term storage in freezer or refrigeration systems that are also approved by the FDA. This brand likely has the biggest inventory and array of ULT freezers to choose from. Here is a sample of their top two common types of freezers.

Fisherbrand™ Isotemp™ -86°C Ultra-Low Temperature Chest Freezers

  • Overview: This freezer focuses on long-term storage solutions for biological and chemical samples. It comes equipped with a control panel that features audible and visual alarms and setpoints and the improved compressor technology allows for quiet and reliable performance.
  • Orientation: Chest freezer and accessed from the top.
  • Exterior Dimensions: 29.9” L x 28.5” W x 43.8” H
  • Temperature Range:  -58°F to -122.8°F
  • Volume Capacity: 3 cubic ft. (84.9 L)
  • Defrost Type: Manual
  • Average Cost: See the manufacturer’s website to request a quote.

Fisherbrand™ Isotemp™ Ultra-Low Temperature Freezers

  • Overview: This freezer features a vacuum panel insulation that maximizes storage capacity while minimizing the environmental impact. Its hydrocarbon technology can save up to 25% energy usage and is designed for quick recovery after opening its doors. Manufactured in a zero-waste to landfill facility, the Isotemp ULT freezer is sustainable and promotes stellar reliability.
  • Orientation: Upright freezer with left/right handles.
  • Exterior Dimensions: 
  • Temperature Range: -86°C to -50°C
  • Volume Capacity: 14.9 cubic ft. 
  • Defrost Type: Manual
  • Average Cost: $12,400 – $18,000

As you can see, there is a lot to think about when it comes to finding the right ultra-low temperature freezer for your lab or facility. Consider the energy consumption, location for the storage, and what you will be storing in the freezer. All of these considerations will go into the ultimate choice of which ULT freezer you end up buying. A back-up plan is also a must-have; always be prepared for the unexpected. Be sure to check out all these manufacturers and maybe even your local lab auction

Want some more support in finding your next laboratory freezer? Excedr can you help you find the right lab equipment for you and even help with financing options. We help make lab equipment and freezers a bit more affordable and easier to do. Contact us today!