Cooling

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Air conditioning solutions

 

With budgets becoming tighter and pressures mounting to become more energy efficient, commercial buildings are already adopting the mindset that the priority is to reduce energy use and be the most efficient they can be from the outset. Whether it’s manufacturers, installers or contractors, we should all be adopting an energy hierarchy approach; a sustainable approach whereby you first aim to reduce your need to consume energy, then look at how you can deliver the building’s requirements efficiently with better solutions, and finally how you can deploy renewable energy sources at a building scale. Whatever the system, it will become increasingly important to ensure that the way it is designed, specified, installed and operated, is done in the most efficient way possible.

Modern commercial buildings today will often need some level of cooling. Large amounts of energy are required to both heat or cool buildings in the UK, but the benefits of getting it right can contribute to a healthier and more productive bottom line for the business. The right choices need to be made to find a system that can deliver the comfort needed in the most energy efficient way possible.

In today’s modern working world, it becomes hard to escape the need to consume energy. Particularly when we look at modern working spaces, there needs to be a balance of cooling alongside heating and ventilation.

A business that provides an ideal working environment, or even a variable one to suit different employees, can certainly reap the rewards. It can also help them meet building standards such as the WELL Building Standard, that provides a holistic formula promoting better health and well-being in workplaces. According to a study conducted on the impact of heat on office productivity 1 , employees experience a 2% decrease in productivity for every 1 °C above 25° C.

Thermal comfort – a condition of the mind that expresses satisfaction with the environment, i.e. when someone is not feeling either too hot or too cold – becomes vital when you consider the productivity and wellbeing benefits of employees in commercial buildings across the globe. Ninety percent of business operating costs are staff related, so by improving the overall health of this ‘asset’, you can improve your business.

When you take into account the fact that we spend just five percent of our day outside 2, you start to understand how important it is for businesses to provide employees with an environment in which they feel comfortable and can therefore produce their best work. Part of this is providing the right levels of cooling into a building.

 

Critical

In some instances, cooling within the building is so vital, it can be considered life critical. For example, in the healthcare industry, hospitals and medical centres have to rely on efficient cooling systems to ensure a constant temperature is maintained for its patients and medical equipment. It’s important that we maintain a balanced perspective between the impact and benefits of cooling environments and recognise that often, there is a fundamentally critical need for it.

We have established that air conditioning plays a key role in commercial buildings and those involved in the decisions of which systems to install have a responsibility to ensure their choice represents the most energy efficient one possible. However, manufacturers also have a duty to ensure that the solutions on offer, are as sustainable and efficiently produced as possible. This could be represented by a hybrid system where traditional refrigeration-based systems work with water as a delivery medium, to lower the overall environmental impact of the system or selecting R32 as a refrigerant which has a lower global warming potential to many of its alternatives.

Once installed, understanding the wide range of controls available with your system can also help reduce wasted energy. Many controls give companies the opportunity to monitor and control their air conditioning across a room, building or an entire network from a single PC or device. Many are simply using these controls as a timer, which is fine for some, particularly in smaller buildings with a constant number of employees. However, the range of functions goes far beyond this.

For example, if a meeting room is empty, the device has the ability to automatically recognise this and lower/switch off the air conditioning to conserve energy. They can also be used to monitor energy usage, spotting trends and anomalies to make changes to help further reduce energy costs.

We can’t control the weather, but these are all factors we can control, and we need to recognise this opportunity to do so. The topic of energy efficiency isn’t going away and if anything, it will move closer to the top of the agenda as pressure, quite rightly, mounts to find ways to mitigate the effects of climate change.

Great strides have already been made in the industry. However, there’s always the opportunity for new innovations to help us make smarter decisions and find that balance creating the perfect conditions for a productive workforce and reducing energy requirements and environmental impact. 

Testimonials

"Paul is a highly dedicated and motivated professional, he is in my opinion the best controls engineer I have worked with, I have no hesitation in recommending Paul. Paul is very adept at communicating complex control issues throughout a design team such that everyone is aware and comfortable with the strategy. Having worked with Paul as a design engineer on the most complex ground source system in the UK I know first hand that Paul has a "can do" attitude facing difficult and technically challenging situations face on. His communication skills are enviable both with clients and within the team. If you need controls and a leader Paul is the choice!"

"Paul is an excellent controls / design engineer who is excellent at ensuring that what he has designed works through diligent commissioning. He is innovative, highly intelligent and very effective."

"Paul, is ever professional. Self motivated and reliable. Extremely motivated and in turn produces excellent results. A personality that transfers well in his career and to others. No hesitation in recommending Paul to anyone within the property building services industry. In conjunction with his engineering knowledge, his IT skills are also highly tuned and a valuable asset."

"I worked with Paul for several years when he was my contracts manager, he's an honest hard working very knowledgeable person he's management skills are exceptionable, Paul only has one word for his commitment & that's total. I would have no hesitation in recommending Paul to anyone."

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(+44) 7703-765470

19 Loring Road, Dunstable, Bedfordshire. LU6 1DZ

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