Updated on February 21, 2024


Created on August 27, 2015

Vaccine Refrigerator BFRV55

Upcoming Update

BFRV55 is a vaccine storage using solar direct-drive battery-free technology.

Developed By
  1. SunDanzer
Tested By
  • Danish Technological Institute
  • SunDanzer
Content Partners


Product Description

SunDazer’s BFRV55 is a 55 liter vaccine refrigerator that can store vaccinations in areas with hot climates and without electricity.

Target SDGs

SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being

Market Suggested Retail Price


Target Users (Target Impact Group)

Public Sector Agencies, NGOs

Distributors / Implementing Organizations

Sun Danzer, PATH, DIVAF and the United Nation's Childrens Fund

Manufacturing/Building Method

Mass manufactured in Tucson, Arizona Interview with representative

Intellectural Property Type

Select Type

User Provision Model

Product can be directly purchased from SunDanzer, either by individual users or by large-scale NGOs, such as The United Nation's Childrens Fund, who use for operations and/or to donate to end-users.

Distributions to Date Status

As of 2017, 1680 units have been distributed.

Gross storage capacity (L)


Holding Temp (°C)

2 to 8°C

Holdover Time (days)

2.7 (65.2 hours)

Number of Shelves

N/A as unit is top loading. Includes 2 optional baskets.

Power Requirements

Nominal 12 VDC solar electric array. Recommend 2-12V 120W panels, one facing east, one facing west.

Vaccine storage capacity (Liters)


Design Specifications

SunDazer's BFRV55 vaccine refrigerator uses phase change material (PCM) to maintain an inner temperature between 2 and 8°C. The refrigerator uses the solar energy to “freeze” this phase change material and then uses the cooling from this material to keep the vaccine compartment cold during the night and on cloudy days. SunDanzer’s BFRV55 refrigerators employ User Independent Freeze Protection, meaning freeze protection capabilities are independent of healthcare workers use and operation of the refrigerator. The vaccines can be stored anywhere in the fridge (even in contact with the walls). No defrosting is required and the thermostat function/setting does not affect the freeze protection. SunDanzer’s refrigerators make use of the 'East-West' array provides, which they suggest on average delivers at least 3 more hours of compressor run time than a traditional South facing array. This configuration allows a fully illuminated panel to start the compressor early in the morning and late in the afternoon. The East-West array also allows the compressor to have more chances to run. BFRV55 specifications: Dimensions: 96.2 cm x 71.1 cm x 86.8 cm; Weight: 99 kg (2); Gross vaccine storage capacity: 55 Litres Cabinet insulation is 110mm high density polyurethane. Refrigerant is CFC-free R134A. (3)

Product Schematics

Technical Support

On-site training for installation & maintenance is provided. Interview with representative

Replacement Components

Components are available. Suggested spares include the Electronic Control Unit ($120), Fan Set ($40), and the Electronic Thermostat/Controller $100). Interview with representative


5-10 years

Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters

Rated for Hot climate zone of 43°C. Delivers autonomy in the target zone of 83 hours 29 minutes. No defrosting is required and the thermostat function/setting does not affect the freeze protection.

Vetted Performance Status

No testing has been completed.


Vaccination is important to control the spread of diseases. However, compromised vaccine efficacy can occur when appropriate actions are not taken to account for temperature changes.

Complementary Technical Systems

SunDanzer provides all of the equipment, tools and instructions needed to install the vaccine refrigerator. The kit comes complete with 4 solar panels, a compass, PV wiring, a universal solar panel mounting kit for roof mounting, grounding kit, 2 vaccine organization storage baskets, temperature display, a user and technician’s manual.

Academic Research and References

Foster,E., Cota, A., 2012, Afghanistan Photovoltaic Power Applications for Rural Development, IEEE PVSC 38, pp. 615

A., Sawadogo, A., Schreiber, B., 2017, Is freezing in the vaccine cold chain an ongoing issue? A literature review, Vaccine, 35, pp. 2127–2133

Kumru, S., Joshi, S., Smith, D., et al., 2014, Vaccine instability in the cold chain: Mechanisms, analysis and formulation strategies, Biologicals, 42, pp. 237-259

Compliance with regulations

Meets WHO/PQS/E003/RF05-VP.2 Standard.

Evaluation methods

WHO pre-qualification testing established a minimum solar radiation reference period below which the product should not be used and the maximum autonomy that the product can achieve. PQS specification E003/PV01.2 specifies a compatible Type 2 solar power system. Three temperature zone designations are described: moderate zone, temperate zone and hot zone. In addition appliances are tested to establish a minimum rated ambient temperature designation.

Other Information


Comments from the Community

1 Comment

  1. E4C.COMMENTS says:

    Steve Harston says:

    I believe that more of these categories should be able to be filled out if the product is “being readied for field evaluation” as stated under the tab “Manufacturing & Delivery”. While the final details may not yet be known, if they are doing a field study they should have at least have preliminary numbers on “Gross Storage Capacity”, “Holdover Time”, and “Vaccine Storage Capacity”. As the product is finalized, the numbers presented here can be modified to reflect these changes. Specifically with “Holdover Time”, even if they haven’t done detailed testing, it would be very beneficial to provide results from their preliminary testing but they should also comment that the results are preliminary.

    From my perspective the information provided under “Power Requirements” is not addressing the question that is being asked. They don’t state if it is intended to be plugged in most of the time, power consumption How is this intended to be used? Temporary no power? Solar driven? Information on the solar panel size could also help users better understand the power requirements of their product.

    I interpret the “Safety” category differently than the owners of this product did. I don’t know which is correct but I interpret it as what are the hazards of using the device. For example, if caustic Phase Change Material is used in their ice packs or if high voltage is required to run their system than these should be called out here.

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