Modern Building Services

June 2004


Get up to date with market trends and technical developments in the

air-conditioning market.

pie charts
Both by value and by volume, minisplit air conditioners dominate the UK market — but the low-cost fan-coil unit remains prominent. These are BSRIA’s estimated figures for 2003.

In search of efficient air conditioning

Technical competition is joining price as one of the driving forces in the UK air-conditioning market. Ignacio de Alvaro has the details.

Energy savings on the central chiller plant at the BT Madley Earth Station are being boosted by variable-speed drives on condenser fans and the use of Excalibur’s Liquid Pressure Amplification.

An efficiency boost for chillers

With air-conditioning being such an energy-demanding service, achieving and maintaining an efficient system is vital. Gareth Holden gives some pointers to making an immediate impact on the efficiency of chiller plant.

Despite concerns that the high system pressures associated with R410A might pose installation problems, Phil Curtis of HVAC contractor MacWhirter found it surprisingly straightforward when a Carrier system was used to refurbish the Butten Building at Sunbridge Park Management Centre. He says that connections took only seconds longer than for lower-pressure refrigerants.

Practising containment

With the threat of a ban on the use of HFCs for stationary air-conditioning equipment having been lifted, responsibility is placed on the industry to prevent leaks, says Andrew Keogh.

Not only are evaporative methods of heat rejection from air-conditioning systems smaller and quieter than air-cooled condensers, but they also offer much lower life-cycle costs.

The life-cycle benefits of evaporative cooling

For the appropriate air-conditioning installations, evaporative cooling offers much lower life-cycle costs than dry cooling — as well as a host of other benefits. Robert MacLeod-Smith explains.

A wide range of indoor units can be teamed up in VRF air-conditioning systems — such as the floor and wall units shown here.

The flexibility and energy efficiency of VRF air conditioning

VRF air-conditioning systems owe their growing popularity to their ability to meet a wide range of requirements, as Tony Nielsen explains.

Bringing R410A down to small air-conditioning equipment is Daikin’s RZQ inverter series.

Daikin brings inverter control to small R410A systems

With the launch of its R410A RZQ inverter series, Daikin claims to the the first manufacturer to offer a full range of R410A inverters from the smallest split to the largest VRV systems.

Advice and guidance on selecting and installing the right air-conditioning solution is available through the newly established Trox Design Bureau.

Trox sets up design bureau to share its air-conditioning expertise

Troxs engineering and technical expertise in air conditioning is being made available to construction professionals by the setting up of the Trox Design Bureau.

VRF air-conditioning is gas powered

Gas-powered air conditioning with all the features of a VRF system is offered by Sanyo in its GHP range. Instead of an electrically driven compressor, a GHP unit has an open-drive compressor driven by a gas-powered engine. Either natural gas or LPG can be used.

Cooling using active chilled beams in a near-conventional ceiling layout is provided in Edinburgh University’s James Clerk Maxwell Building using Dadanco high-output ACB cassette-type active chilled beams.

Chilled beams suddenly got smaller

Dadanco chilled beams with around three times the output of traditional active beams installed in the James Clerk Maxwell Building of Edinburgh University have enabled a much more conventional ceiling layout to be used looking very similar to that associated with a fan-coil systems.

A 10 K reduction in peak summer temperatures in this bedding factory in Dublin has been achieved following the installation of a Breezair evaporative cooling system.

Evaporative cooling pulls down temperature in bedding factory

Peak summer temperatures in excess of 35°C in a bedding factory and warehouse have been reduced to around 25°C following the installation of Breezair evaporative-cooling equipment.

Multi V
LE has entered the VRF market with the launch of the Multi V system capable of serving one indoor unit from 16 indoor units.

LG moves into VRF market

LG has introduced a range of VRF air-conditioning products that can operate up to 16 indoor units from one outdoor unit. Multi V is initially available in two sizes 4.5 and 10 hp and can be operated via the Internet, a PC, a deluxe or simple controller.

Heating in winter, air conditioning in summer and dehumidification to cope with the hot tub in this conservatory next to a house in London is provided by a Toshiba heat-pump air conditioner.

Mini-gym demands give air conditioner a thorough work-out

Air conditioning including dehumidification, heating and cooling has been provided for a domestic conservatory in west London housing a range of exercise equipment. The free-standing conservatory is close to the house and thus requires heating in winter and cooling in summer to offset the considerable heat gain through its glazed roof.

Meeting the requirements for low noise and low height for a hotel upgrade in central London is an Aermec NRA 650 air-cooled chiller.

London hotel benefits from quiet air conditioning

Quietness in operation was the key criterion in the selection of air-conditioning plant for the upgrade of a 90-bedroom hotel on a sensitive site on the south side of the River Thames in London and very close to the Tate Modern.

Mitsubishi Electric has brought inverter-controlled heat-pump technology to smaller air-conditioning systems with additions to its R410A M-Series.

Mitsubishi boosts the efficiency of small systems

Mitsubishi Electric has radically revamped its range of small air-conditioning systems with the launch of a new R410A M-Series range of inverter-driven heat pumps.

Installed by Longcross Refrigeration, Daikin’s VRV2 air-conditioning system serves the Manchester control centre of train operator FirstGroup.

VRV2 signals energy efficiency in train control centre

Longcross Refrigeration has installed a Daikin VRV2 heat-recovery air-conditioning system in the control centre of train operator FirstGroup in Manchester, which runs the TransPennine Express trains.

The CyberAir precision air-conditioning range from Stulz uses the most energy-efficient ventilation technology as standard.

Stulz launches new precision air-conditioning range

Stulzs CyberAir precision air-conditioning range incorporates new ventilation technology, new micro-processor and a completely new structure. Electronically commutated fans are used in all models.

 Graham Manly
Concerned with competence — Graham Manly

Building for tomorrow

CIBSE’s new president Graham Manly is concerned that the building-services industry lacks the resources and competences it needs for a sustainable future.

computer simulation

Hospital project benefits from prefabrication techniques

Without close teamwork and the extensive use of prefabricated services modules, 10 weeks would have been added to the installation time for a new hospital in Coventry and nearly 20% to services installation costs.

saftey nets
Fig 1: COMPASSure provides risk control with multi-level protection.

A low-risk approach to risk management

Managing risk on construction projects can be a nightmare. The newly developed COMPASSure scheme provides a means of transferring risk to those parts of the supply chain that are best equipped to carry it. Alan Kennedy explains.

Electronic commissioning device is accurate and reliable

Following over 20 years in commissioning, engineer Duncan Selby has developed an electronic commissioning device for piped services that is said to provide the ultimate in accuracy, reliability and convenience.

The pipe system that is installation and environmentally friendly

The Wefatherm pipework system from Durapipe is based on polypropylene-random, so it can be completely recycled or disposed of in landfills, where it behaves in a neutral and non-toxic manner.

Popular condensing units available ex stock

Bitzer now offers from stock the most popular models from its range of air-cooled Euroscroll LH condensing units. These popular units are initially available with 2 to 9 kW nominal motor power and include various options to suit customer requirements.

Eaton MEM adds lockable sockets to Ultra range

Lockable 13 A socket outlets have been added to the Ultra flat-plate range of wiring accessories from Eaton MEM. They are suitable for commercial premises and public areas where the use of socket outlets needs to be restricted.

Fan-coil units designed to meet demands of hotel rooms

Trane has introduced a fan-coil unit that is suited to the requirements of the hotel market.

Titon moves into powered ventilation

Titon is adding powered ventilation products to its portfolio. The company is well known for its trickle ventilators and window fittings.

Controlling warm-water underfloor heating

Control of warm-water underfloor heating systems from simple to sophisticated is provided by a specially designed control module from Coster Environmental Systems.

Fan-coil units with a touch of designer style

Pipe Center has expanded the range of Sabiana fan-coil units that it distributes with the addition of the Futura designer-cased version. Their enclosures have rounded corners suitable for professional offices, surgeries and similar locations where image is as important as functional performance. A vandal-resistant version is also available.

Photo-voltaic solar cells achieve new levels of efficiency

Claimed to be the most efficient solar cells commercially produced in Europe are the Saturn 7 series of power modules from BP Solar.

Air-handling units from Exhausto include heat recovery

Five models of heat-recovery air-handling units from Exhausto cover airflows from 400 to 7700 m3/h. Units in the VEX100 range are compact in size so that they can be sited virtually anywhere. The largest unit has a footprint of just 2.7 m2.

Ex-Or introduces a simple approach to lighting control

Simple and effective control to switch off lighting when there is sufficient daylight and to dim and brighten lamps as light levels fluctuate is provided by the LightSpot photocell from Ex-Or.

Ideal Boilers introduces floor-standing condensing boilers

In readiness for higher efficiency levels for commercial boilers expected in the 2005 update of the Building Regulations, Ideal Boilers has added floor-standing condensing boilers to its Imax range. Six boilers provide outputs from 80 to 280 kW, and boilers can be installed in multiple formation to provide larger outputs.

Chalmor’s fit-and-forget lighting

Endurance long-life luminaires from Chalmor have a working life of 60 000 h before replacement is required equating to 20 years of operation at 10 h use a day.

Ferroli improves the efficiency of its Pegasus boilers

Ferroli has enhanced its Pegasus range of atmospheric boilers with the introduction of a high-low burner design to boost efficiency. These burners are used on all boilers in the range, which cover 12 outputs from 51 to 289 kW.

Axair Climate launches air-to-air heat-pump systems

Axair Climate has introduced an upgraded range of air-to-air heat-pump systems using R407C.

Customised maintenance package for humidifiers

Vapac has launched a customised maintenance package designed to maximise the reliability and energy efficiency of humidifiers.

Yorkshire Fittings presses on with gas

As part of a complete product relaunch including three new ranges, Yorkshire Fittings has rebranded its PressFit plumbing products as XPress.

Pre-fabricated wiring axes installation times

A family of modular wiring systems from Apex Wiring Solutions is described as providing a faster and more flexible alternative to conventional wiring for lighting, underfloor power and buswire distribution systems.

Humidifier kits are packaged for ease of installation

JS has launched two electrode-boiler humidifier packages for contractors. The ELMC Plus package includes all the elements needed to supply 5 or 10 kg/h of steam directly into a room or to a duct.

Airedale chillers qualify for Enhanced Capital Allowances

Three of Airedales chiller ranges are listed on the Energy Technology List, so that they qualify for Enhanced Capital Allowances.

Guide to Part L

CIBSE has expanded and updated its guidance to Part L of the Building Regulations dealing with energy efficiency in buildings. One of the most significant additions to Guide F is the comprehensive data on energy-consumption benchmarks by type of building and type of room/area in a building or complex. Other checklists include one on why buildings fail on energy on energy. Practical enhancements include a design checklist and how to carry out an energy survey.

The guide costs £112, plus postage, and £56 for CIBSE members. Non-members can join CIBSE as affiliate members and immediately benefit from the discount. Membership fee is £77.

Distributor’s price guide

The latest ‘Trade price guide’ from national distributor Pipe Center runs to 128 pages and provides a reference for specifiers and installers. It gives the latest information for pricing and specifying on the company’s complete range of pipe and fittings, valves, plumbing and heating and ancillary equipment for commercial and industrial environments.

The guide includes details of the latest additions to the competitive and high-quality Jet range of products.

Technical support for air-conditioning systems

Guidance on comprehensive on-site and technical services for consultants and contractors has been published by air-conditioning supplier Mitsubishi Electric.

The company’s engineers can conduct a complete inspection and unbiased appraisal of the installed system to validate warranties and confirm that it is operating within its design parameters.

Other services include diagnostic health checks to maintain the desired environment and monitor efficiency. Diagnostic software checks for correct refrigerant levels, provides an on-screen snapshot of system performance, confirms that correct maintenance procedures are being followed and produces a full written reports.

Bespoke luminaires

LB Lighting’s new website provides specifiers with a clear understanding of LB’s expertise in the design and manufacture of bespoke luminaires. It includes a wide range of examples to illustrate the benefits of bespoke designs in practice.

CIBSE opens up membership to more people

CIBSE has enlarged the scope for membership by being able to accept competent building-services engineers as corporate members without demanding that they meet the narrower requirements of the Engineering Council at the same time. The changes that the Privy Council has approved are in line with developments in other engineering institutions. Candidates for corporate membership will still be required to meet CIBSEs own competence standards.

Emap acquires Montgomery share of Interbuild

Emap has acquired the 50% shareholding in Interbuild that was formerly held by Montgomery Exhibitions. Formal ownership starts on 7 July.

Legislation paves way to improved energy efficiency in buildings

A 25 to 30% improvement in the energy performance of buildings over present ratings can be expected when revised Building Regulations come into effect by the end of 2005, according to Alan Aldridge, executive director of the Energy Systems Trade Association. He was speaking at the London event of a series of nationwide seminars organised by ESTA Keep your eye on the ball.

McQuay employee’s community efforts are acclaimed

A chartered accountant employed by McQuay has won an award for her dedicated voluntary work on a community project in Northumberland.

Daikin completes takeover of MacQueen Air Conditioning

Daikin has acquired one of the UKs fastest-growing air-conditioning suppliers, MacQueen Air Conditioning.



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