While University of Louisville (UofL) Health continues to maintain an adequate supply of personal protective equipment (PPE), donations are helping prepare for the still unknown future need. The N95 mask remains an essential tool for protecting front line health care workers, and it remains in short supply nationwide. Front lines protecting community “As soon as we heard about the need from Mayor Greg Fischer, we began working with our suppliers to see if we could secure masks for the do...
GE Appliances, a Haier company, announces that a significant portion of the products it makes over the next two weeks at its nine manufacturing sites in the United States will be donated to American heroes working across the country on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19. “These men and women are working around the clock to keep us safe. We’re relying on them, and they are relying on us and the products we make to keep their families safe and fed,” said Kevin N...
Tripp Lite, a manufacturer of power protection and connectivity solutions, has made it easier to improve cooling efficiency in edge applications and data centers with the SmartRack® Aisle Containment System. The new aisle containment system, which keeps hot and cool air separated, promotes better temperature control and improved equipment performance in hot or cold aisle environments. The system incorporates existing rack infrastructure and can be easily installed and modified without assis...
Australia’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning manufacturer, Seeley International calls on the Federal and State Governments to confirm that it will be recognized as an Essential Service provider, should wider geographic and industry lockdowns come into force as part of escalating COVID-19 response measures. Seeley International Group Managing Director, Mr. Jon Seeley, said, “Good heating and fresh air ventilation are essential to good health, and must be maintained, es...
HVAC industry employees are included among “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers During the COVID-19 Response” as designated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The guidance memorandum states: “If you work in a critical infrastructure industry, as defined by the Department of Homeland Security … you have a special responsibility to maintain your normal work schedule.” The edict comes from the DHS Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agen...
COVID-19 is a human tragedy for thousands and is having a profound impact on the world economy, including the HVAC market. Many businesses are scrambling to survive even as they address the intense human element of the crisis. A survey by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) gathered insights on the effect the coronavirus pandemic is having on the HVAC industry. More than 70% of survey respondents expect the medical implications of the pandemic to last up to three months. (The sur...
Good news for building owners, engineers/architects, and HVAC contractors who can now save energy, construction costs, and space in commercial facilities with this latest approved code addition. Doorway air curtains were approved June 25, 2019 as alternatives to vestibules on most commercial building entries in the upcoming ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2019 “Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low Rise Residential Buildings.” The professional association’s approved addition requires that the air curtain performance be tested in accordance with ANSI/AMCA Standard 220 to ensure it provides a minimum 400-ft/min. airstream velocity at the floor. This is good news for retail, restaurants, healthcare, hotels, office, and other facility owners, because they can now opt to forego the expense of vestibules in new construction, or repurpose significant square footage for more productive uses by retrofitting existing vestibules. spike in air curtain installations The addition’s “Air Curtain Effectiveness” task force was sponsored by AMCA Consulting engineers and architects, who previously were hesitant to replace vestibules with air curtains due to inconsistent code language, now have the support of ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2019 which will be published this fall. Furthermore, HVAC contractors will see a spike in air curtain installations to accommodate facilities looking to prevent energy loss through their main entries and meet building codes. Air curtains also protect against the infiltration of outdoor air, fumes, flying insects, wind, and dust through open doorways, and contribute to occupant air comfort. The addition’s “Air Curtain Effectiveness” task force was sponsored by AMCA (Air Movement and Control Association–International), an Arlington Heights, Ill.-based trade association dedicated to certifying manufacturers’ air performance statistics. effective energy conservation device “This is the most significant recognition of air curtains as an effective energy conservation device since the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) approved air curtains as vestibule substitutes in 2015”, says David Johnson, President of AMCA, and Director of Engineering for air curtain manufacturer, Berner International, New Castle, Pa. Inclusion in ASHRAE Standard 90.1 required more than eight years of air curtain research and presentations. The IECC code and the high-performance overlay code, the International Green Construction Code (IgCC), helped initiate the path to Standard 90.1 acceptance by allowing AMCA-certified air curtains as substitutes for vestibules. real-world air curtain situations All three studies proved air curtains that maintained a minimum 400 ft/min. airstream at the floor However, ASHRAE’s mechanical, building envelope, and other subcommittees required additional research of real-world air curtain situations such as wind loads and building pressure differentials on an annual national-weighted average basis. Subsequently, the subcommittees accepted AMCA’s commissioned research represented by three third-party lab studies by Montreal-based Concordia University professor, Dr. Liangzhu Wang. All three studies proved air curtains that maintained a minimum 400 ft/min. airstream at the floor (as per ANSI/AMCA Standard 220), were equally effective or better than vestibules in buildings 3,000-square-feet and larger. Decades ago, two-door vestibules were code-mandated to save building energy. Theoretically, they created an airlock as one door would open and close before the second door opened. automatic door opening sensor However, the emergence of automatic door opening sensor requirements, smaller space-saving dimensions, and other infringements on vestibule effectiveness, helped make air curtains an attractive energy-saving alternative. On average, air curtain-protected doorways were proven to save total building energy usage by a factor of 0.3-2.2% more over that of vestibules, according to Wang’s studies. This illustrates they’re equal or more effective at separating outdoor and indoor environments regardless of door opening styles or cycles.
Danfoss’ precautions keep the business running : First and foremost, the company’s focus is on keeping everyone safe and they have taken prompt action all over the world to get the needed health and safety precautions in place to help ensure the wellbeing of all their colleagues. This is key to ensure that the company continue to operate and serve their customers. They are following the different requirements by local authorities, and their contingency plans have been quickly put in place to minimize potential impact in their supply chain and delivery to customers. Until now, the company has experienced only minor interruptions. However, they are very much aware that supply chains might be impacted by local and regional issues as the coronavirus continues to spread globally. They know the coronavirus situation is developing day by day and its status and impact is very different from one country to another. Therefore, Danfoss is keeping in very close contact to their suppliers and logistics providers, and in all areas where possible, they are taking proactive steps to stay ahead of potential supply shortages. Danfoss is still available to serve and support the customers The company has, to a large extent, shifted to digital and online services, and many of the colleagues are now working from home to avoid large-group environments that the medical experts warn against in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. This also goes for their customer service functions, but they are still available as always and eager to support the customer’s needs. In Danfoss, they have a ban on all travel between countries, and they have decided to significantly limit their face-to-face meetings in general. They are always fully available – on the phone and online - ready to serve their customers and partners. These are undoubtedly unprecedented times in the world, but, together, everyone will get through this period of adversity in the best possible manner. The company and its employees will focus on staying safe and remain committed to keeping the wheels turning to continue to serve and support their customers.
Hi-line Industries, a supplier to the compressed air sector, has a solution for all companies seeking a temporary way of delivering high-quality, dry compressed air. An affordable and responsive rental scheme is now in place at the company, covering Hi-line’s comprehensive range of compressed air dryers. Although hiring a compressor is easy enough for short-batch emergency runs or exceptionally busy periods, finding specialist drying equipment is not so straightforward. And yet air quality is just as important in temporary periods as it is during long-term regular operations. Vast Range Of Compressed Air Dryers Hi-line overcomes this issue by offering hire options on a vast range of compressed air dryers, including refrigerant, heatless, heat-regenerative and point-of-use models. High-quality, competitive filtration packs can also be provided. The company’s Tundra refrigerant air dryers, for example, are renowned for their robust and reliable performance. Moreover, the newly improved single-cell heat exchanger gives the most efficient transfer of heat at the lowest energy cost. Hi-line can offer its proven HPSA units, which come in ‘plug and play’ format mounted on skids For those seeking heatless dryers, Hi-line can offer its proven HPSA (Heatless Pressure Swing Adsorption) units, which come in ‘plug and play’ format mounted on skids with their own filtration package as standard. Performance is assured with HPSA range, as it is with Hi-line’s series of heat-regenerative adsorption dryers, as well as its point-of-use desiccant adsorbers. The latter are ideal for the small-scale separation of humidity from compressed air systems. Automatic Energy Management Systems From as little as £50 per week, Hi-line can supply from a huge stock of ready-to-go compressed air dryers, including Class O, Class 4 (+3°C PDP) and standard -40°C PDP desiccant units. Offering capacity from 5 to 5000 cfm, both short and long-term hire requirements can be fulfilled. Importantly, control packages are available to suit every application, including heatless, heat-regenerative, pneumatic, 24V, 240V, dewpoint and AEMS (automatic energy management systems). Regardless of what type of dryer is required, delivery to site includes set-up by a fully qualified Hi-line compressed air engineer, providing both convenience and peace of mind. If desired, a smart controller can be added to all makes of dryer as an energy-saving option, while N2 and O2 generators are also available.
There is currently no evidence that Coronavirus (COVID-19) is airborne, the virus appears to spread via droplets and direct contact with contaminated surfaces and objects. However, as with any air conditioning system, the design and maintenance is key to its performance and the health and wellbeing of the building occupants. Research suggests that increased humidification has a large impact on reducing the transmission of some airborne virus, as will the level of filtration within a ventilation system. JD cooling recommends that the air space is supplied with clean air or suitably diluted with fresh clean air, and that any installed air handling/conditioning system be regularly maintained.
Trade associations and membership societies representing North America's Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration industry requested that federal, state, and local authorities grant "essential business" status to those technicians and engineers who are tasked with keeping the American people productive, healthy, and comfortable in these trying times. The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) joined with nine other organizations, representing the HVACR and water heating equipment manufacturers, contractors, technicians, engineers, plumbers, and sheet metal contractors in issuing a statement to governmental organizations grappling with travel and personal interaction restrictions designed to prevent the spread of infection. HVAC And Commercial Refrigeration Equipment "While citizens are coping with a variety of unforeseen and unusual restrictions, it is essential that they are able to maintain their HVAC and commercial refrigeration equipment," the association leaders wrote. "Aside from providing comfort, this equipment is vital for health and safety in addition to productivity, particularly for air filtration and food and medical supply preservation, especially in this time of quarantine. When equipment fails, technicians must be able to repair or replace it as quickly as possible,” they added. "Accordingly, as states and local jurisdictions considering their health crisis travel restriction plans, we respectfully request that HVACR technicians and engineers be considered essential businesses," the statement concluded. Signing The Statement Organizations signing the statement included AHRI; the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA); the Heating, Airconditioning, and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI); the Air Movement and Control Association (AMCA); North American Technician Excellence (NATE); the Plumbing, Heating, Cooling Contractors National Association (PHCC), the Sheet Metal & Air Conditioning Contractors National Association (SMACNA); the Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-Conditioning Institute of Canada (HRAI); ASHRAE; and the Mechanical Contractors Association of America (MCAA).
The spread of COVID-19, commonly known as the coronavirus, continues to pick up pace globally and is increasingly a key priority and in view of the growing concern Daikin Applied (UK) Ltd and Daikin Applied Service would like to reassure the customers that they have adopted a risk-minimization approach to ensure minimum disruption to business. Unfortunately, the onset of the Coronavirus has caused many industry implications, this is a brief update on Daikins supply chain, operations and the measures undertaken to ensure the continuation of the business and support to customers. Precautionary measures They have issued their employees with information to take precautionary measures as advised by the government and NHS and will monitor any changes and advise accordingly. As a business, they have implemented further precautions: Business trips to and from Category 1 countries and regions are prohibited until further notice. Travel to other countries should be avoided unless deemed essential and approval given by Senior Management. Meetings where possible to be conducted via video conferencing, Skype, GoTo Meetings etc. Communal areas are being given extra cleaning, e.g. rest rooms, canteens, door handles etc. Staff are being asked to self-isolate in accordance with government guidelines if they have been in direct contact with someone with the virus or travelled to a category 1 country within the last 14 days. Daikin is considering the introduction of temporary smart working arrangements to allow more flexibility and to help reduce risk. Everyone should practice good hygiene to protect against infections. AHU and Chiller orders Currently their factories both in the UK and Italy are working at normal capacity and they are taking steps to ensure this continues. However, it is possible that the current situation will affect business in the coming weeks and they will keep all customers updated if the situation changes. At present, Daikin has not seen any reduction in the level of service they get from their suppliers with this under constant review and their procurement department is in regular contact with the factories and suppliers, checking lead times and supply issues. Daikin Applied Service Remote workers such as their engineering teams have mobile phones and all have access to office servers via their tablets and laptops. As Daikin’s in-field engineers are generally lone workers, they would consider that their contact with the office and other engineers will be limited and, they will continue to monitor the situation. Daikin on site The frequency of virtual visits may increase, and actual visits decrease Clients with chillers capable of supporting the Daikin On Site remote monitoring, and with maintenance contracts already set up to utilize this, will continue to be monitored regularly. To reduce site attendance however, should faults occur where generally a call out may be required, then these faults will be reset (where possible) via the DoS system and monitored accordingly by one of the remote monitoring team. The frequency of virtual visits may increase (and actual visits decrease) should a reduced workforce through self-isolation occur. Monitoring workforce health As well as Daikin’s own locally stored spares they source spares from their factories across Europe, they purchase spare parts and materials across a range of suppliers who will in turn, purchase materials from across the globe. They will continue to monitor the health and wellbeing of the workforce along with the supply chain.
Hybrid heating systems are becoming more and more common today as building owners, engineers and facility managers seek ways to reduce heating costs in both current facilities and new builds. Combining a large mass, non-condensing boiler with a high efficiency-condensing boiler – or “hybrid system” – ensures that a heating system is running at optimum efficiency to minimize operating costs over the course of a heating season. Why do condensing and non-condensing boilers make such a good pair? Non-condensing boilers are ideal for the core heating season months of December through February. That’s because these boilers are designed to run at higher return water temperatures above 130 degrees to maximize longevity. The average efficiencies of non-condensing boilers, such as cast iron boilers, range from 80-85 percent thermal efficiency. Condensing and non-condensing boilers Running condensing boilers in high return temperature applications reduces their operating efficiency In comparison, condensing boilers reach their maximum efficiency – upwards of 95 percent –when the return water temperature is below dew point and are ideal for operation during the milder heating season shoulder months of October, November, March and April. Running condensing boilers in high return temperature applications reduces their operating efficiency to marginally higher than non-condensing boiler designs. By combining non-condensing and condensing boilers in a hybrid system boiler plant, users can reset building set points, reduce fuel consumption to lower operating costs and create comfortable, consistent building temperatures throughout the heating season. Hybrid boiler systems So why not just use an all high efficiency boiler plant? Consider the following benefits of a hybrid boiler system: Boiler Replacement Applications: Installing a hybrid system makes sense in existing, non-condensing replacement boiler applications. Most often, there are at least two high mass, non-condensing boilers in older boiler plants. Installing a high efficiency, condensing boiler in place of one of the failing high mass boilers now enables the efficiency benefits of the hybrid system. Further, this approach enables an incremental step in financing the overall boiler replacement capital outlay over time. New Build Applications: In short, condensing boilers cost more - upwards of 30-40 percent more than non-condensing boiler systems because of the non-corrosive heat exchanger materials required. Installing a hybrid system is more cost effective to purchase upfront and often achieves the greater portion of the energy savings of replacing an entire boiler plant with high-efficiency condensing boilers. Product Life / Longevity: Inherent to their design, non-condensing boilers have a longer product life, up to two times that of condensing boiler designs because of their thicker cast iron design and wider water pathways. Installing a hybrid system ensures a longer life of the boiler plant dedicated to the coldest heating season months. Hybrid heating systems are becoming more and more common today Multiple industries Consider an elementary school with two large cast iron boilers – one of which needs to be replaced after many years of dependable operation. In this scenario, the cast iron boiler is replaced with a new, high efficiency condensing boiler to match the heating requirement. A hybrid system can be utilized in many facilities across multiple industriesOnce installed, the condensing boiler controller allows for the assignment of an alternating, lead/lag boiler plant so that it serves as the primary boiler over the milder heating season months and the existing non-condensing boiler is operational more for colder days. A hybrid system can be utilized in many facilities across multiple industries. More frequently, commercial buildings such as medical facilities, apartment complexes, churches, schools, colleges, nursing homes and corporate campuses, are standardizing on hybrid system boiler designs. Combining a durable cast iron boiler with a high efficiency condensing boiler can reduce wasted energy, lower utility costs and protect the environment with a smaller carbon footprint, while extending the life of the existing heating system at a lower acquisition cost.
Refrigerants used in cooling systems for homes and businesses are being replaced with alternatives that have less potential for global warming. But the transition comes at a risk: Some of the new refrigerants are flammable. Although less flammable than gases such as propane, for example, new refrigerants can still ignite and burn with a high intensity under ideal circumstances. The new materials have low-flame velocity and are less easily ignited; however, one byproduct of combustion is toxic hydrogen fluoride. Flammability risks of non-toxic refrigerants Non-toxic refrigerants are categorized by flammability risks. A1 designates no flame propagation; A2 indicates lower flammability; and A3 indicates higher flammability. Hydrocarbons such as propane have higher flammability (A3) and are restricted to a lower charge limit that does not address refrigeration needs of large systems. Hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs) are mildly flammable, have a low flammability limit (LFL) and have been categorized as an A2L refrigerant. They tend to burn slowly and give off little heat. Hydrocarbons such as propane have higher flammability NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) offers online and instructor-led training to educate firefighters about flammability and toxicity risks associated with new refrigerants. The training also covers asphyxiation challenges, jet stream fires, transportation issues and other life-safety considerations associated with flammable refrigerants. The training covers how to adapt response tactics to mitigate consequences from refrigerants in various types of emergencies. Strict adherence to standard operating procedures (SOPs), personal protective equipment (PPE) and self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) protocols and decontamination practices are also covered. Categorising refrigerant flammability The Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) provides funding to NFPA to develop training on the emerging technology. According to an ASHRAE report, refrigerant flammability can be characterized by three factors: Likelihood that a refrigerant leak would result in a concentration range that reaches the lower flammability limit; Presence of a sufficient energy ignition source; and Likely severity of a combustion event, and probability of a secondary fire. ASHRAE is the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers. The Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Technology Institute (AHRTI) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) are researching the flammability of refrigerants, including factors such as refrigerant charge size, release height, leak rate, humidity, and room size and temperature. When choosing the best refrigerants, it is likely a tradeoff will be required among global warming potential, flammability and efficiency. Codes and standards Codes and standards are being modified to address the use of new materials Currently, codes and standards are being modified to address the use of new materials, although risk mitigation concerns of the fire service have historically not been considered. One issue is the risk of using large amounts of flammable gas in a refrigeration system to cool a larger room. Additional safety measures are needed to make the risk acceptable. Detection of leaks is another issue, especially the need for repeated calibration of leak detectors to ensure accuracy. More than 200 countries will be ushering in the new class of refrigerants.
Data is playing an increasingly important role in smart buildings. Analysis of building system data is guiding an expansion of capabilities in the smart building environment, making building systems – including HVAC – more efficient and effective. The convergence of multiple building management systems is inevitable -- it's just a matter of time and it’s already happening. The data collected from the various systems make up a data profile that can be put to work to create new outcomes. Customers want to increase their control of environments using smart technology. I spoke with the folks from Johnson Controls (JCI) about these topics at the recent AHR Expo in Orlando. As it relates to HVAC, they say data can guide system operation based on historical data and a variety of sensors that can determine, for example, that there are 15 to 20 people in a conference room and adjust the HVAC system accordingly. Contributing technologies include wifi access, smart phone connectivity, smart meeting room technologies and sensors such as proximity and heat systems. Sensors used for fire and security are augmenting data that can be used to guide the operation of HVAC systems. Improving efficiencies Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning can do even more to optimize how systems operate "Every generation of HVAC we launch is more energy-efficient and more environmentally friendly," says George Oliver, JCI Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. As the largest consumer of energy in a building's infrastructure, HVAC is the focus of efforts to improve efficiencies. Applying new tools such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning can do even more to optimize how systems operate. "We want to optimize the equipment, processes and sensor data to create a model to best operate a building," says Oliver. The benefit is a huge reduction in energy usage and lowering of the carbon footprint. The goal is to combine an energy-conscious view of operating a building while improving the customer experience. There are cost savings in the range of 20 to 40% of operating a system. Building platforms, access control, and video management Johnson Controls is seeking to incorporate new technologies into building platforms and control, as well as access control and video management. “Buildings have so many kinds of systems, but how do we put all that together?” asks Oliver. Technology is coming together through protocols and an operational technology (OT)-informed world. Johnson Controls has been working with direct channel partners and end users on enhancing their platform and improving their ability to manage data, whether in an existing building or new construction, to optimize how equipment is being utilized. Concepts of AI, machine learning, smart Internet of Things and “smart edge” guide how Johnson Controls operates as a company. A single data platform enables creation of a smart building today that incorporates an integrated, streamlined approach. The additional capabilities are being managed by Android or iOS “apps.” Adopting new technologies The user environment of HVAC has been slow to change" “The user environment of HVAC has been slow to change, but it is accelerating now with adoption of new technologies,” says Mike Ellis, JCI Executive Vice President and Chief Customer and Digital Officer. Adoption of new HVAC equipment is critical to modernizing systems, and the new equipment works alongside the trend to “digitization.” “The industry is at an inflection point in a positive way, and is accepting the technology,” said Ellis. “What we’re hearing from customers is that they want to make a difference, create a differentiation, and bring it together in a unique way.” But will existing players (like JCI) drive the changes, or will it come from outside, high-tech firms? “We believe the domain players inherit an advantage because they really understand the importance of data in the building environment. Among collected data, the secret is: What data is important and how is it analyzed? How is that technology deployed? Industrial companies have the right ecosystem to make it happen, based on 130 years of seeing how buildings operate.” Moving forward “We realize the industry is being disrupted, which begins at the top,” says Oliver. “Smart edge” refers to the remarkable amount of expertise at the edge of the network, where tens of years of data informs the building “science.” The resource is impossible to duplicate. Johnson Controls is working with end-customers to define and direct how JCI is moving the company forward. The accelerated roadmap is based on the experience of people in the buildings. “We are right at the heart of major global trends – sustainability, connectivity and data, and cyber- and physical security,” says Oliver.
Small airborne particles contribute to the spread of infectious diseases of all sorts, and current concerns about the novel coronavirus COVID-19 are highlighting the role of HVAC systems to minimize airborne disease transmission and to ensure better indoor air quality in general. Because small particles can remain airborne for some period of time, HVAC systems can play a positive role in minimizing disease transmission, specifically by: Supplying clean air to susceptible occupants. Containing contaminated air and/or exhausting it to the outdoors. Diluting the air in a space with cleaner air from outdoors and/or by filtering the air. Cleaning air within the room. Developing resources ASHRAE has developed resources to help maximize how HVAC systems can have a positive impact as the coronavirus spreads. The society recommends strategies such dilution ventilation, laminar and other in-room flow regimes, differential room pressurization, personalized ventilation, source capture ventilation, filtration (central or unitary), and ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) (upper room, in-room and in the airstream). ASHRAE suggests that owners, operators and engineers should collaborate with infection prevention specialists knowledgeable about transmission of infection in the community and the workplace and about strategies for prevention and risk mitigation. “The recent escalation in the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 is alarming on a global scale,” said ASHRAE President Darryl K. Boyce. “While [we support] expanded research to fully understand how coronavirus is transmitted, we know that healthy buildings are a part of the solution." ASHRAE offers guidance to building owners, operators, and engineers on how to best protect occupants from exposure to the virus and specifically how airborne particles might be circulated by HVAC systems. Practical standards and guidelines For example, ASHRAE’s recently approved position document on Airborne Infectious Diseases summarizes practical standards and guidelines that all types of facilities should follow. ASHRAE Standards that can have a positive impact on the spread of COVID-19 include those covering ventilation for acceptable indoor air quality, testing methods for general ventilation air-cleaning devices, thermal environmental conditions for human occupancy, and air quality within commercial aircraft. Another ASHRAE standard covers a method for testing UV lamps for use in HVAC units or air ducts to inactivate microorganisms on irradiated surfaces. ASHRAE also advises that new and existing healthcare intake and waiting areas, crowded shelters and similar facilities should go beyond minimum requirements. The virus Since the first notification on Dec 31, 2019, of more than 40 cases of an unusual viral pneumonia of unknown origin in Wuhan, China, the infection has spread to all of mainland China and later throughout the world, according to Healix International. The coronavirus, later designated COVID-19, infects the lungs, causing a viral pneumonia, and causes initial symptoms of fever with cough and sore throat. It can progress to shortness of breath and breathing difficulties leading to pneumonia. There is currently no vaccine or specific treatment. Among the available ASHRAE resources are a full position document, standards, publication, technical committees, research projects and material to prepare for COVID-19. ASHRAE is a global society advancing human well-being through sustainable technology for the built environment.
When Pine Valley Ranch, a Spencerville, Ohio-based egg-breaking facility was looking for an energy efficient way to wash 600 cases of eggs an hour they turned to Consolidated Hunter, a local heating contractor, and Pickrel Brothers, a provider of industrial heating supplies to help present options. Their recommendation? Install six Weil-McLain SlimFit 750 commercial high-efficiency hot water boilers. “We’re an egg-breaking plant,” explains Evan Fleck, an owner of Pine Valley Ranch. “Our eggs come straight from the barn and are immediately washed. Then they are broken, separated and chilled. Once this is done, they are loaded into liquid tankers and shipped to be pasteurized. Every step of the process is important, especially the washing of the eggs. We need plenty of hot water for that, as well as for other daily operations.” Efficient production process The 4.5 million BTU/hour Pine Valley heating system supports seven individual heating zones The 4.5 million BTU/hour Pine Valley heating system supports seven individual heating zones. The first three zones are dedicated to the egg washing machines and supported with 750 BTU/hour boilers. The fourth and fifth zones support the clean-in-place equipment (990,000 BTU/hour heat exchangers) while the two remaining zones are for the indirect fired water heater and the on-site plant mixing station. “Every zone is critical to ensuring a high-quality, efficient production process,” says Fleck. “We have more than 900,000 chickens at this facility and they produce a lot of eggs. The Weil-McLain boiler systems provides a consistent source of hot water to accommodate this large number.” Wide range of commercial installations SlimFit boilers have been serving the heating industry since 2009 with rugged, cast horizontal heat exchanger sections that provide thermal efficiencies up to 95.8% (SlimFit 1000 & 1500 models). The boilers feature a low pressure drop design, with large water passageways to accommodate a wide range of commercial installations, including retrofit and replacement applications with older water systems. Other standard features include a composite condensate tray for heat exchanger longevity The larger SlimFit 1000-2000 models feature a narrow ‘door-fit’ profile and integrated roller casters for improved installation maneuverability in confined spaces and weight restricted areas, saving contractors time and money. Other standard features include a composite condensate tray for heat exchanger longevity, customizable control mounting location (front or side) and leveling legs, which mitigate the need for a concrete service pad. Typical heating operation conditions Control features include a setup wizard that guides the installer through the start-up process and 10 preset typical heating operation conditions. The SlimFit also features zone stacking up to 24 programmable zones without the need for additional external panels and 0-10 VDC analog output signal for easy integration with a lag boiler in a hybrid system. “We really appreciate how the Weil-McLain boiler-system enhances our operation,” says Fleck. “The equipment was installed when the facility was built so they’ve been part of our production process from the beginning. Running a plant of this size always presents challenges, but our hot water needs are not one of them.”
An innovative, efficient air conditioning system has been chosen to provide cooling and comfort to guests at the Strand Palace Hotel in the heart of London. The hotel, which is walking distance from some of London’s most famous theatres and has been welcoming guests since 1909, needed to modernize its heating and cooling systems to ensure a quality experience for guests. High levels of energy efficiency and minimal disruption to the hotel’s operation during installation were also key considerations. Hybrid VRF system The solution came in the form of the unique Hybrid VRF (Variable Refrigerant Flow) system from Mitsubishi Electric, which offers simultaneous heating and cooling with full heat recovery. The combination of refrigerant and water used in Hybrid VRF also delivers a much lower Global Warming Potential (GWP) than traditional VRF systems and saves around 30-40% in refrigerant use in comparison. The fit-out was designed by Elementa Consulting and installed by Working Environments and has seen units fitted across the hotel’s 790 rooms. The project started in September 2018 and is due for completion in April 2020, making the project the biggest of its kind in Europe. With an occupancy of 96% every day of the year, it was crucial that the hotel remained fully operational during installation to minimize loss of revenue and disruption to guests. Refrigerant is only used between the outdoor condenser and a special Hybrid Branch Controller box Cost-saving benefits Ted Connell, specifier and designer at Elementa said, “Many different systems were assessed, but the expertise of the Working Environment team combined with the modular installation of the Hybrid VRF made it stand out as the right option for The Strand." "It was possible to complete the installation floor by floor, even half a floor at a time where necessary, allowing the hotel to remain open during the process.” The Hybrid VRF system also offers additional cost-saving benefits by removing the need for leak detection equipment. Refrigerant is only used between the outdoor condenser and a special Hybrid Branch Controller box (HBC). From here, water is used to transfer heating or cooling to each room, removing the need for additional equipment or additional annual maintenance regimes.
A new multi-million pound MRI scanner facility at NHS University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, is being cooled by high-efficiency chillers from Carrier. Carrier’s heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) business is a part of Carrier, a global provider of innovative HVAC, refrigeration, fire, security and building automation technologies. Three Carrier AquaSnap 30 RBP air-cooled liquid chillers have been installed by mechanical and electrical contractor Whitehead Building Services for the project’s main contractor Kier, under the Designed for Life construction procurement and delivery frameworks set by the Welsh National Health Service. Greenspeed intelligence The chillers deliver a combined cooling capacity of 900kW, and provide the stable, reliable cooling required to maintain the high-tech diagnostic equipment in peak condition. Chilled water is supplied to the scanners at six degrees Celsius and returned at 12 degrees Celsius, to begin the cooling cycle again. Equipped with Carrier’s Greenspeed intelligence, the chillers have variable-speed water pumps and condenser fans to precisely match cooling output to current load conditions. This enables the system to operate with outstanding part-load efficiency, ensuring low carbon emissions and reduced running costs over the life-time of the plant. The new scanning facility provides an important diagnostic and therapeutic service to the hospital" “These units offer exceptional resilience as they have three separate refrigerant circuits, and are therefore ideal for use in such critical applications,” said Russ Tyrrell, senior sales engineer for Carrier. “In the unlikely event of one circuit going out of operation, the chiller can continue to operate and deliver up to 66% of cooling capacity, maintaining a high level of cooling.” Enviroshield coil coating Variable speed fans also deliver low noise, an important consideration given the hospital application, plus extended operational life due to reduced wear and tear on compressors, fan motors and other moving mechanical parts. “The new scanning facility provides an important diagnostic and therapeutic service to the hospital, and it is vital the machines are kept operational,” said Martyn Brown, who led the project for Whitehead Building Services. “We selected Carrier chillers because of their reliability and the fact it is proven technology. There are three existing Carrier chillers in use at the hospital, and they have an established track-record.” To safeguard the units from corrosion in the challenging coastal environment, condensing coils are protected by Carrier’s Enviroshield coil coating. This factory-applied flexible epoxy coating completely encapsulates and isolates the aluminum metal of heat exchangers from the surrounding environment.
Fort Worth's historic downtown art-deco Sinclair building, now a Marriott Autograph Collection hotel, boasts its new variable refrigerant flow (VRF) HVAC system which raised the first-floor ceilings and cleared the roof for a new bar. Baird, Hampton & Brown (BHB) provided civil, electrical, and mechanical/plumbing engineering design services to make the building one of the most technologically advanced hotels in the world. Variable refrigerant flow (VRF) system As part of the renovation, BHB's mechanical engineers were tasked with replacing the building's traditional hydronic heating and cooling system with the increasingly popular variable refrigerant flow (VRF). VRF is a type of air-conditioning system that adjusts refrigerant flow to different areas of a building as needed, instead of distributing large quantities of refrigerant at all times. This technique creates practical zoning, giving occupants the ability to adjust their space temperature to their preferred comfort level. An added advantage is that VRF is one of the most sustainable systems on the market. "The VRF system helps The Sinclair be a more efficient and smarter building. A hotel room's AC unit will respond to the person who walks in and automatically know what set-point temperature they are looking for," stated Gibran Michel, BHB Associate and Senior Mechanical Designer. VRF outdoor units BHB's design of the hotel's VRF system was the firm's largest to date. Since VRF does not require as much ductwork and space as a traditional HVAC system, the team was able to raise the ceiling heights and bring in ornate windows on the lobby level. In addition, the VRF outdoor units were placed in the alleyway instead of the roof, which made room for a rooftop bar. The Sinclair held its grand opening in January 2020 and now offers a unique and modern experience while maintaining its stylish look and feel, thanks in part to its advanced VRF HVAC system.
A construction project in Calgary, Canada, called Cube, features several firsts. It’s the city’s first office-to-residential space conversion and real estate developer Strategic Group’s first re-purposing project. It’s also the first building in Canada to feature the latest advancement in condensing boiler heating technology from Weil-McLain. The Cube – a 52,000 square-foot, seven-story building in Calgary’s Beltline neighborhood –features 65 one and two bedroom residential rental units and is just a short walk from the city’s downtown area. Once the aging Stephenson office building, the 38-year-old building was converted to new residential and rental units in 2019. Latest Boiler Technology Cities like Calgary have seen office building vacancy rates as high as 27% in the past few years" The building’s developer, Ash Mahmoud, Managing Director of Calgary-based Strategic Builders Inc (SBI), the construction arm of Strategic Group, which owns, manages and develops office, retail and apartment properties across Canada, oversaw the conversion project. “Cities like Calgary have seen office building vacancy rates as high as 27% in the past few years,” said Mahmoud. “Rather than let downtown buildings go unused, it has been one of our core missions to convert them into residential.” In addition to incorporating contemporary designs and styling finishes, Mahmoud also sought the latest in boiler technology to heat the new development. High Efficiency Boiler System To conduct the HVAC overhaul, Mahmoud turned to Nu-Mun Contracting, a Calgary-based HVAC company offering commercial and residential plumbing, heating, and air-conditioning services. Working with SBI and the project engineer, David Muncaster, owner of Nu-Mun Contracting, devised a strategy to convert the building to a high efficiency boiler system and recommended specification of the latest advancement in condensing boiler technology: the Stainless Vertical Firetube (SVF) from Weil-McLain. Eric Cameron, project manager with Nu-Mun Contracting, oversaw the boiler installation at the building. “We have a long standing relationship with Weil-McLain, and we trust the quality of their boilers,” said Cameron. “The SVF boilers were the perfect match for the space.” Simplify Installation And Operation The SVF also meets all market-driven bid specifications, and is designed for most heating needsTo meet the building’s heating style and load, the team installed two SVF 1100 MBH high-efficiency condensing gas boilers in the building. The SVF boilers features thermal efficiencies up to 97.1%, a clover-shaped stainless steel fire tube heat exchanger for corrosion resistance, and the intuitive and user-friendly Unity™ control system to simplify installation and operation. “With superior thermal efficiencies, the SVF line offers cost savings and energy efficiencies that could allow owners to qualify for local utility rebates, if available,” said Craig Demaray, National Sales Manager with Weil-McLain Canada. “The SVF also meets all market-driven bid specifications, and is designed for most heating needs including applications in schools and other educational facilities, public institutions, healthcare buildings, offices, hotels, multi-family, churches and more.” Multiple Boiler System The high-water content design of SVF heat exchanger means a low loss header is not required providing cost savings so the boilers can simply be piped in a primary-secondary design. The on-board Unity™ control system allowed the boilers to communicate with each other in a Multiple Boiler System (MBS). A master boiler controls the modulation and sequencing of the boilers on the network In this configuration, a master boiler controls the modulation and sequencing of the boilers on the network to achieve the desired system supply temperature. “With the automatic sequencing feature, the boilers communicate directly with one another so they sequence themselves and rotate as needed,” said Cameron. “They operate to optimize energy use and efficiencies. When heat is required, the boilers will stage on as needed.” Time-Saving Installation The Cube conversion project was completed in 12 months and more than two-thirds of the building is already leased to residents. Mahmoud praised the experience with Nu-Mun Contracting. “Working together with Nu-Mun was a seamless operation,” said Mahmoud. “It was a really great relationship and, as a result, the job was a complete success.” The start-up and installation progressed smoothly in part due to the way these boilers are designed" “The start-up and installation progressed smoothly in part due to the way these boilers are designed,” said Cameron. “The SVF boilers offers time-saving installation features that include heavy-duty roller casters for improved maneuverability in confined spaces, industrial-grade leveling legs, and an end-shot burner design requiring only 18 inches overhead space.” Low Operating Costs Mahmoud appreciates the ease of maintenance that the boilers offer for the building staff “The boilers are really user friendly,” said Mahmoud. “We can even conduct the annual maintenance on the units ourselves to keep them in tip-top shape.” In addition to offering class leading serviceability, the new boilers also offer low operating costs and are expected to bring energy savings and a reduction in gas usage to the facility. But most important, Mahmoud reported that tenants are extremely pleased with the climate and comfort of the building.
Indoor comfort technologies from LG Electronics spotlighted at the 2020 AHR Expo, helped transform a 1920s art-deco office building into a brand-new luxury boutique hotel. The Sinclair, a Marriott Autograph Collection Hotel, is featured in a new case study debuting at the 2020 AHR Expo show (booth No. 6343). Future-Ready Technologies The Sinclair Hotel aims to create an unforgettable and luxurious experience for its guests in a classic 1929 building in downtown Fort Worth, Texas. The hotel’s owner and management team sought state-of-the-art technology to power, sustain and manage the entire property while maintaining the historic building’s unique design and architectural details. The Sinclair Hotel required individual control of its HVAC system throughout 164 guestrooms The hotel required individual control of its HVAC system throughout 164 guestrooms (featuring 50 different room types) and sufficient heating and cooling for the lobby bar, reception area and large basement restaurant. With this in mind, the hotel management team identified LG as a company that was not only able to fulfill a myriad HVAC needs, but also create a full building ecosystem with its range of cutting-edge technologies across an expansive portfolio. Powerful Air Conditioning Technologies In the hotel’s quest to be low-voltage, the management team has employed what is believed to be one of the world’s first applications of Power-Over-Ethernet (PoE) to a large array of end points, to help achieve many of energy-efficiency and forward-thinking goals for the Sinclair’s desired level of technological ability. With PoE installed throughout the property, a variety of LG’s award-winning products will provide a low-voltage and energy-efficient solution for this forward-thinking partner. LG’s award-winning Multi V IV Heat Recovery Units were selected for their ability to provide individual room comfort for each space within the larger property. The Multi V IV also contributes to the building’s energy efficiency, high performance and flexibility in design and installation options. Installation versatility was considered to a key factor as the historic building was restricted in regard to lower ceilings as well as limited space for out-door equipment. AC Smart controller Local HVAC and Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) experts, Texas Air Systems, recommend the installation of a variety of indoor solutions that ensure a quiet conditioned space, including LG’s Art Cool Mirror and Ceiling Cassettes, to accommodate the tight ceiling area within guest rooms. The unit’s quiet operation supports a tranquil guest room environment and contributed to the decision behind their selection for this property. The technology works unnoticed, contributing to the comfort and experience of a guest’s stay. LG’s AC Smart controller allowed for seamless handling of the HVAC system for the management team. This innovative control solution for a variety of applications offers a single LG platform that drives both variable-refrigerant-flow technology and energy efficiency. Property managers can now easily manage set and monitor the building’s heating and cooling performance with ease. Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) technology The LG connected outdoor units with slim, space-saving features were installed on the exterior of the building Prior to installing LG’s Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) technology, the building relied on an old chiller system to condition the entire building. The old chiller required a great deal of space in the building’s lower level. After switching to VRF, the hotel was able to gain a great deal of usable floor space for the large lower level restaurant. In turn, the LG connected outdoor units with slim, space-saving features were installed on the exterior of the building. LG has created industry-leading VRF technology to minimizes efficiency losses, provide sustainable energy savings and offer some of the lowest life cycle costs of any system on the market today. For similar costs as a traditional system, The Sinclair now has a highly reliable, energy-efficient HVAC solution that delivers comfort and convenience for its occupants. Stunning OLED TVs and Displays “Creating an unforgettable experience for my guests is of the utmost importance as a developer, and I work with some of the most innovative and forward-thinking partners around the globe when developing my properties,” said Farukh Aslam, Chief Executive Officer, Sinclair Holdings. He adds, “I am very sold on LG’s technologies and the results are quite impressive, thanks to its amazing energy-efficiency and quietness, contributing to the tranquil atmosphere throughout the property.” With an eye toward implementing cutting-edge technology, the developer also incorporated a stunning array of LG OLED hospitality TVs into every guest room – the first hotel to have OLED TVs in every guest room. LG OLED technology is a high-end category of displays that deliver a picture with incredible color LG OLED technology LG OLED technology is a high-end category of displays that deliver a picture with incredible color, even from wide viewing angles. It uses self-lighting pixels that can be individually turned on and off for exact control of image brightness and quality, delivering infinite contrast ratios optimized for high-dynamic range content. In addition to the guest room displays, a number of other LG commercial displays are also featured throughout the property’s public spaces – including the lobby, restaurants and bars. “Thanks to our strong relationship with Sinclair’s owner and building managers, there are multiple products across an array of LG business units installed throughout the property,” said Donald Decker, Director of Owner Sales, LG Air Conditioning Technologies. High efficiency AC technologies Donald adds, “Aligning with a partner like The Sinclair on our shared goals to power the building of the future, allowed an ecosystem that connects our industry-leading air conditioning technologies and other LG products to create a comfortable, elevated experience for guests across the entire property.”