Case Studies

Modine Manufacturing Company

Applied Thermal Innovation

Modine Manufacturing Company (Modine) has been a worldwide leader in thermal management for almost a century. Arthur B. Modine, who is initially remembered in the engineering world for his contributions to the automotive radiator industry, founded the company in 1916. Modine’s first facility consisted of a one-room office connected to a small workshop in Racine, Wis. The company is still headquartered in the same town, but over the course of the last century Modine has substantially outgrown the old office space.

Modine’s 6,700 worldwide employees design, engineer, test and manufacture award-winning heat-transfer innovations in the transportation and building HVAC markets with sales of $1.6 billion. Over time, the company’s solutions could be found in everything from the Ford Model T to modern-day Class 8 trucks or even newly constructed soccer stadiums. Modine’s Commercial Products Group (CPG) manages the commercial and residential HVAC side of the business, with a focus on heating and cooling solutions throughout Europe and North America. Matt McBurney, vice president of the CPG, says the business has been growing and is looking to expand further into new geographical markets, as well as increase its presence in established regions.

Energy-efficient Air Solutions

Built upon a foundation of thermal innovation, the company’s heating and ventilation products are suited for a variety of building applications. The most recent addition to its line of energy-efficient HVAC solutions is the Atherion packaged rooftop ventilation system. The Atherion is designed to bring fresh, tempered outside air into the building under any climate condition. When including the advanced Energy Recovery option, this system becomes a high-efficiency, 100-percent dedicated outside air unit. Designed to exceed ASHRAE 62.1, 90.1 and 189 standards, the Atherion can potentially save building owners thousands in annual energy costs.

On the heating side, Modine’s Effinity93 gas unit heater sets a standard of efficiency by offering a number of sizes for varying commercial applications with each size operating at an industry-leading 93 percent. The Effinity93 model has become extremely popular with building owners for reducing energy consumption, saving money and lowering CO2 emissions.

Another Modine advantage is that the company’s gas-fired unit heaters are made to stand up to the rigorous environments found in greenhouses. The company offers a line of products designed specifically for these contained environments. These heaters can be subjected to corrosive elements due to moisture and chemical levels in the air. Customized solutions are available for even heat distribution, energy efficiency and extended product life.

Rounding out Modine’s product offering is a full line of air-conditioning products targeted for the school retrofit market, sold under the Airedale brand. From the newly redesigned geothermal and air-source heat pumps to unit ventilators, Airedale products improve the indoor air quality of a school and lower energy expenses by utilizing the latest technology like EC motors, multistage compressors and energy recovery wheels/economizers.

Ongoing Research and Development

To fuel the company’s innovations, Modine operates a state-of-the-art technical center in its Racine headquarters. The company’s team of engineers and lab technicians runs performance tests on the company’s products to ensure all of the systems meet or exceed the stated efficiency and noise levels. Modine’s technical center includes the following testing facilities: a semi-anechoic sound chamber for noise measurement of its equipment; multiple split rooms for performance and durability measurement on both water- and air-cooled systems; and a climatic soak chamber for testing the packaged rooftop ventilation system under any condition, including a temperature range capable of -40 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit, featuring full-spectrum solar simulation. This means Modine can put equipment through the rigors of the desert, a humid summer or a frigid winter.

The company is embracing new technologies as part of continued product innovation. Schools have enjoyed Modine’s geothermal solutions for more than a decade. But thanks to its July 2012 purchase of Geofinity Manufacturing, a company out of British Columbia, Modine can now offer geothermal heat pumps to commercial and residential customers. Geothermal systems capture energy from just under the Earth’s surface and use it to heat or cool a building space, creating tremendous energy savings for end users.

With its lineage, proactive nature, strong brand, and efficient HVAC products, Modine is positioned to help both residential and commercial customers either upgrade their equipment or lower the energy costs of any new building project. Because of the economic slump these past few years in North America, it is more important than ever to show customers some kind of efficiency or energy savings before they make further capital expenditures. “Here in the U.S., the industry’s slowly been climbing back up,” McBurney reports. “Our plan is to keep our foot on the gas and move forward.” Renewed consumer optimism has brought growth back to Modine and McBurney is looking forward to global expansion.

From the beginning, Modine has focused on applied thermal innovation – innovation that surpasses the needs and requirements of its customers. The company’s resources, staff and pioneering environment have helped established a well-respected brand name that’s as strong today as it was in 1916. As the company continues to raise the comfort level of its customers, the Modine Manufacturing Company has proven to be the perfect thermal technology partner for almost any HVAC application.

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Spring 2018



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