Stirling Freezers

Announcing the New Freezer Purchase Policy

Fred Hutch has more than 850 freezers located throughout the labs and shared resource departments of which approximately 450 are ultralow or -80°C freezers.  The Fairview Freezer Facility houses 200 freezers and has reached capacity for power and floor space.  In order to address the significant space and power requirements necessary for storing valuable research materials, Fred Hutch has chosen the Stirling as the sole source model when purchasing a new ultralow (-80°C) freezer.  When budgeting capital or requesting a -80°C freezer as part of a grant application or a capital request be sure to list the Stirling freezer and include the cost of accessories such as shelves, racks, and boxes with your request. 

This initiative is great news as the Stirling freezer offers many advantages over a traditional -80°C freezer.  Some of these include:

  • Highest sample storage capacity per square foot of floor space and energy use of any freezer on the market.
  • Shelves are fully adjustable to fit all types of racks.  600-660 box capacity depending on configuration.
  • Significantly quieter operation that conventional compressor driven freezers.  This allows placement in the lab.
  • The layout of the freezer allows easier reach to samples on the top shelves without the conventional compressor occupying the lower shelf space.  The piston engine rests on top of the freezer.
  • Fastest pull-down from ambient temperature as well as slowest warm-up time.
  • Plugs into any outlet! Stirling freezers run off either 120v or 208v by changing a cord, making installation easier.
  • Operating off 120v allows more Stirling freezers to operate in the shared freezer facility than conventional freezers.
  • There is a door gasket defrost to keep the door free of ice buildup! No more scrapping required = less work for researchers.
  • Best warranty, Stirling covers 2 years parts and labor and 7 years parts on piston engine compared to only 5 years on compressor engines.
  • Stirling maintains a constant internal temperature (within 0.5°C) versus the fluctuations of a conventional freezer which fluctuate several degrees above and below the set point.
  • Options available include chart recorder, CO2 and LN2 back-up systems.


  • Made in USA
  • Uses 50% less power to operate than a conventional compressor freezer (verified by FE). 
  • Heat generated during operation is reduced which results in 50% less energy needed to run the AC needed to control room temperature.
  • Uses 80% less refrigerants and no oil to operate.
  • Although the technology is new to scientific freezers, the piston engine has been around for 20 years and found to be very reliable in other applications.
  • The production process uses 52% less CO2 to manufacture than a conventional freezer.
  • Weight is only 625 lbs versus 1000 lbs making it easier for FE to move.

If you are ready to purchase a new freezer or need additional information please contact Shared Resources at x5879.