VRF air conditioning in hotel avoids need for leak detection in guest rooms
The new 250-bedroom Holiday Inn Express Birmingham City Centre is using Mitsubishi Electric’s Hybrid VRF air-conditioning system to remove the need for equipment to detect refrigerant leaks in bedrooms. The Hybrid VRF system resembles a VRF system from the outdoor units to hybrid branch controllers (HBCs) but then uses water to carry heating and cooling to the bedroom units.
Mark Foster, managing director of Centre Island, which will manage the hotel, explains that this approach removes the annual maintenance costs associated with a leak-detection system.
The design for the air-conditioning system was put together by Sisk Design & Build Contractors working with building-services consultancy DW Pointer. Together they committed to providing a VRF system that did not incur the significant cost of leak-detection units in all the bedrooms. It was installed by Dragon Air Conditioning.
The 18-storey hotel will have 16 outdoor units to serve 250 slim ducted indoor units in a design that has one outdoor unit serving one wing on each of two floors to minimise refrigerant pipework.
Mitsubishi Electric’s Mark Grayston, senior product manager for VRF and hybrid VRF, explains, ‘A lot of hotels are now coming to terms with how to keep guests comfortable whilst complying with new legislation on refrigerants and leak detection. That is why we have developed the Hybrid VRF system, and this new development points the way to delivering the highest levels of guest comfort without adding significantly to installation and maintenance costs.’