Natural ventilation is part of Luton’s Innovation & Business Base
Natural ventilation using WindowMaster controlled window opening and Monodraught Windcatchers on the roof is a key part of indoor climate control for this new building in Luton.
Controlled natural ventilation using the WindowMaster ventilation system and Windcatcher units from sister company Monodraught is part of the environmental strategy for the Innovation & Business Base in Luton. The building will provide quality accommodation for high-tech start-up companies and has an architectural design with a number of energy-saving features, leading to it obtaining an ‘excellent’ BREEAM rating. The 6500 m2 facility has over a hundred supported units. A weather station monitors external conditions, including wind direction and speed, temperature and rainfall. Changes in wind pressure on the facade are also monitored. This information is used to precisely control the opening of windows around the building to control air quality and temperature. Windcatchers on the roof capture wind from any direction and direct it through controlled dampers into rooms below. Part of the specification for the building was for walls to be capable of being moved or removed to accommodate expanding companies. This made maintaining the internal climate more complex because the natural-ventilation system then has to take into account changes to the internal layout. The system at IBB is based on the NV Advance concept, which is said to be the only system in Europe that intelligently monitors windows to prevent fingers or other objects being trapped by reversing the motor to release the window.