El Segundo, CA-based Aura Systems has introduced an electric refrigeration system for trailers that can be retrofitted onto any existing trailer with shore power standby capability.

The system uses the AuraGen generator mounted on a tractor and an interface box integrated on the trailer, the company said. It will provide up to 20 kW of electric power in either 240V AC 3 phase or 480V AC 3 phase configurations. There is a quick connect/disconnect cable included.

According to Aura, a typical diesel-based refrigeration system uses 1 gal. of fuel per hour. The AuraGen solution uses just 0.2 gals. per hour.

When the vehicle is in motion, the AuraGen system powers the refrigeration unit as if it was plugged into shore power. When the trailer is disconnected, or is parked during rest periods, the refrigeration system runs as normal.

“Our new refrigeration trailer solution provides immediate cost savings and reduction in harmful emissions to operators that have a diesel-based trailer system with shore power standby,” said Melvin Gagerman, CEO.

Aura is also developing a hybrid APU system, powered by a lithium-ion battery supplied by Corvus Energy. The new system will use the Corvus batteries as a prime power source while the AuroGen control and power management system with built-in inverter will provide AC power.

When the batteries are discharged to a pre-determined level, the internal combustion engine will automatically turn on and the AuraGen will continue to provide the AC power to support the load and simultaneously provide the DC power required to recharge the batteries, Aura said. Once the batteries are charged, the system will turn off the engine and rely on the batteries for power.

The AuraGen also acts as the starter motor for the internal combustion engine, the company said.

By managing AC and DC power in the manner that it does, fuel usage will be “significantly decreased and similarly harmful emissions are reduced,” the company said.

The product will be a 10 kW system available in the second quarter of this year.

“The introduction of the hybrid APU is another milestone in our strategic plan for this year,” said Gagerman. “Our strategic approach as previously announced is to focus our business on applications that save fuel and help the environment at the same time. In addition, our goals as we grow the business, are to provide our shareholders with better liquidity by aiming to qualify for a Nasdaq listing sometime during the year.”