Fenland regeneration project exploits mixed-mode cooling
Energy-efficient comfort cooling for two buildings on the £47 million Nene Waterfront regeneration in Wisbech is provided by a combination of Passivent natural ventilation and Mitsubishi air-conditioning equipment.
The two buildings are the Boathouse and the adjacent Business Space office building.
Research by Brunel University has shown that this mixed-mode system reduces the energy consumption of a building by over 40% compared to conventional air conditioning alone.
The Passivent system exploits natural air movement to ventilate the building and reduce energy consumption. Advanced control equipment continuously monitors internal air quality and temperature. Only if the internal temperature becomes too high will the air conditioning be called on.
Will Lockwood of project Feilden+Mawson explains, ‘The Boathouse seeks to reflect best practice in energy conservation and BREEAM standards — including natural ventilation, rainwater harvesting, high levels of natural daylight and orientation of the buildings to control solar gain. It is hoped that with the incorporation of Passivent louvres, air-handling and air-conditioning energy will be greatly reduced, while also providing the building users the benefits of a healthy and pleasant working environment, offering an adaptive and flexible solution to ensuring air quality is maintained to a high standard in a manageable way.’
A combination of 11 Passivent wall and window Aircool units in the 3-storey Boathouse draw fresh air into the building, and warm, used air is extracted via the stairwell acting as a stack or chimney to the Airstract roof terminal.
The 2-storey business space incorporates 30 Passivent wall Aircool units to draw in fresh air at low level to displace warm internal air through acoustic transfer units to e exhaust through high-level Aircool ventilators.
Modulating actuators control the ventilation flow as dictated by the central Passivent/Mitsubishi mixed-mode controller.