Carrier test facility plays key role in testing air-conditioning system for 42-storey office development in France

Carrier’s laboratory for testing fan-coil units played a key role in testing and verifying the performance of 3000 FCUs for a 42-storey office development at La Défense in Paris.
To ensure that the air-conditioning system for the 42-storey Granite office development at La Défense in Paris would perform to requirements, Carrier’s laboratory for testing fan-coil units was used for full-scale mock-ups. 3000 Carrier fan-coil units are to be installed, served by six chillers. The building is expected to achieve certification to the Haute Qualité Environmentale, the French equivalent of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive. Developer Nexity-Sari commissioned the 4-month test using the Carrier facility on behalf of Société Générale, the future owner of the 85 000 m2 development. The developer, end user, consulting engineers and installer all witnessed the tests at some point. Several room conditions in the tower were reproduced precisely in the laboratory. They included two ceiling heights, various wall and floor dimensions, the main furniture and the customer’s lights and blinds. The test set-up also mimics the unusually high windows and very deep window recesses (0.9 m), which radically affect airflow in the room. As a result of the tests, Carrier influenced the design of the ceiling diffusers. In all, 28 different room configurations were validated — in both heating and cooling mode. European norms accept a 3 K variation in temperature gradients in the occupied zone of each office. However, with the improved airflows resulting from the testing, the variation is less than 1 K from the floor up to 1.85 m using the FCUs and diffusers that were customised and tested in Carrier’s demonstration suite. Some room configurations required the simulation of a 2 m-diameter central pillar, part of the building structure, while maintaining the temperature gradient and air velocity at less than 0.2 m/s in cooling mode. These FCUs will operate with a variable-flow fresh-air valve systems controlled by carbon-dioxide sensors.
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