The Housing Minister, Chris Pincher, announces a series of ambitious new targets for a green building revolution. Designed to lower energy consumption and help protect the environment, the new standards will affect all homes and businesses – existing and new build. The new targets include measures to ensure: All new buildings are constructed to be highly energy efficient. Building work in existing buildings must meet new standards. Measures to tackle overheating in existing homes to...
Developers can now upgrade heating systems across new build projects due to Smarther with Netatmo, a new flush-mounted smart thermostat from Legrand. Compatible with Legrand’s smart radiator valves, Smarther with Netatmo is a thermostat that can be flush or wall-mounted, to offer a slick, high-quality heating system. Flush mounting the system - using a versatile backbox - allows the thermostat to protrude by just 12.6mm from the surface of the wall. Voice-activated control Offering comp...
Air conditioning technologies and solutions firm, LG Electronics USA is continuing to pave the way for the future of connected buildings, with the expansion of its award-winning controls platform, LG MultiSITE. Empowering building owners and operators to optimize their operations and efficiency, especially with Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) systems, the MultiSITE lineup is packed with advanced features that deliver more building synergy and accessibility than ever before. LG MultiSITE contro...
Schneider Electric, the pioneer in the digital transformation of energy management and automation, today announces the release of new generation of TeSys Giga series Motor Starters. The iconic TeSys Giga series has been reimagined with the latest smart digital innovations to deliver a simpler, more sustainable, safe and secure customer experience for panel builders, consulting engineers, system integrators, facility managers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) further building on pr...
The practice of working from home soared during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and many observers see a likely continuation of the trend, as infection risks gradually subside. Both environments – home and office – depend on HVAC systems to keep occupants comfortable (and safe!). Therefore, the industry stands to be impacted whichever way the trend plays out. We asked our Expert Panel Roundtable: How will remote working affect residential and commercial HVAC?
To boost the confidence of professionals installing energy efficient heating and hot water products for residential new build developments, Baxi has continued to prioritize training with bespoke virtual learning modules. Throughout the pandemic, Baxi has supported housing providers, developers, and their contractors with virtual training opportunities. This approach has allowed for more valuable training to continue, covering the installation, commissioning and maintenance of the Baxi Assure co...
In a grassroots campaign, Rick Hasselbeck, Chief Commercial Officer of GE Appliances (GEA), a Haier company, took to the streets sharing gifts with hungry consumers. To the surprise and confusion of GEA owners, the personally hand-delivered parcels were empty but hot. One anonymous fan said, “I was delighted to receive a package from the company’s CCO and thought I must have won something. Instead, I was left scratching my head.” Delivering dozens of packages to registered customers, Hasselbeck reportedly had a skip in his step as he served up the heated gifts. “I intended for this to be an easy task, and it’s really no heavy lifting,” said Hasselbeck. Airdropped Surprises Known for long-winded speeches and sleepy Zoom meetings that drone on… and on…, Hasselbeck held a lengthy press briefing earlier in the day with extensive detail on the preparation of fried foods. “He kept saying things like, ‘crunch without the calories’ and ‘crispy for a crowd’, but to me the speech was full of hot air,” said one prominent, national correspondent in attendance. “Although that brussels sprouts recipe was a keeper,” he added as a sidenote. Because Hasselbeck could only cover so much ground in one day, some consumers received their free gifts as airdropped surprises. Drones took to the skies, sweeping the nation on the first of April to deliver #AirFryApril as over-the-air (OTA) upgrades. How It Works More than 200,000 consumers who purchased GE Appliances’ ranges with WiFi capabilities in the last four years can now have No-Preheat Air Fry via an over-the-air upgrade through the GEA SmartHQ app. To access state-of-the-art air fry technology, connect one of the 60 eligible models of CAFÉ, GE Profile, and Haier appliances first. Then, users will be notified through the SmartHQ app and should follow the prompts to complete the upgrade. See instructions here: “We are ‘Better When Connected’ and now your oven is getting better too, with smarter cooking,” said Hasselbeck. “We invite you to join the owners adding air fry technology to the ovens already in their homes. That’s the benefit of smart appliances. Ask yourself, fry, not?”
The Viessmann Group has announced a record revenue in 2020 of 2.8 billion euros (previous year: 2.65 billion euros). Following a global market slump at the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, the family-owned company and its installer partners quickly consolidated and kept day-to-day life going for customers internationally, growing sales by 6 percent over 2019. Maximilian Viessmann, Co-CEO of the family business, said, at the Viessmann Live digital event on March 22nd: "Thanks to a unique sense of solidarity among our installation partners and our 12,750 family members, we have successfully managed to continue to grow in a year of crisis. We did this with a lot of positive energy and for our common purpose: to create living spaces for generations to come. A crisis shows clearly who you are, and not who you want to be. Together and united, we have shown who we are. I am extremely grateful for the team spirit, the solidarity, and the sense of responsibility demonstrated by the entire team." Renewable Energy-Based Climate Solution Sales growth is largely attributed to Viessmann’s renewable energy-based climate solutions and digital services. Green climate solutions – which now account for approximately 50 percent of Viessmann turnover – include hydrogen-ready wall-mounted gas boilers, fuel cells (+8 percent), heat pumps (+35 percent), and batteries (+48 percent). On the digital technology and services side, Viessmann saw dynamic growth in its subsidy management program, Viessmann Wärme/Heating-as-a-Service business, and both installer and end-user apps. Viessmann recorded notable positive growth in Germany, Poland, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Turkey, and Switzerland. ThermoWise Viessmann acquired a stake in ThermoWise, a renowned South African commercial heat pump specialist In 2020, Viessmann acquired a stake in ThermoWise, a renowned South African commercial heat pump specialist, laying the foundation for entry into fast-growing markets in Africa. Viessmann also expanded its product portfolio and improved market access in Central and Eastern Europe through the acquisition of Kospel in Poland, a specialist manufacturer of electric instantaneous water heaters, electric boilers and domestic hot water cylinders. A growing presence in South-East Asia involved setting up new company locations, notably in Singapore. Viessmann has seen double-digit percentage growth in sales in the first two months of 2021. Successful Crisis Management During The Pandemic Viessmann’s 20 production plants around the globe continued production during the pandemic with almost no interruptions, thanks to excellent hygiene, Covid-secure working practices, and a far-reaching testing strategy, which resulted in below-average numbers of Covid-19 cases within the company. Responding to needs outside of the core business, Viessmann embarked on various social responsibility initiatives, manufacturing mobile ventilators, ICUs, face masks, and disinfectants. Viessmann engineers developed the new Vitovent 200-P air purification system, to supply school classrooms with continuous fresh air, removing aerosols and protecting students and teachers against viral infection. In addition, the Viessmann Foundation supported more than 80 schools during the crisis with the supply of ventilation solutions, laptops, computers, monitors, disinfectants, and masks. During 2020, Viessmann invested more than 120 million euros in its own future. Research and development focusing on hydrogen-ready heating systems and fuel cells, and holistic solutions for purely electricity-powered houses, including digital energy management. A new development center for heat pumps in Dresden, Germany, was established. Viessmann increased the number of employees by 450 to a total of 12,750. Co-create climate for life The theme behind the latest climate innovations Viessmann has also unveiled a number of new products, platforms, digital and other services to tackle global warming, together with specialist partners. Highlights, relevant to the UK market, include: New electronics platform: a new controls system will network Viessmann energy systems – including heat pumps, ventilation systems, and electricity storage systems – with digital services to form a uniform overall system. Beyond controlling the devices, it offers simple and fast access via the ViCare app and the new Vitoguide, which now combines menu-guided commissioning, remote maintenance, and service in one digital service tool. Green hydrogen readiness: Viessmann’s gas-condensing boilers in the Vitodens 200 and 100 series are already certified to operate with up to a 20 percent hydrogen mix with natural gas and can even convert a 30 percent blend into heat easily and efficiently. The next generation of Vitovalor fuel cell heating devices, the new compact Vitobloc 300 NG 15 and NG 20 CHP modules and, from mid-2021, the Vitocrossal 100 gas-condensing boiler (type CIB), can also be operated with a proportion of up to 20 percent hydrogen. Viessmann’s Vitomax hot water and steam boilers can be operated today with pure hydrogen. New CHP units: The new Vitobloc 300 NG 15 and Vitobloc 300 NG 20 models will be launched later in 2021. They are compact, fully wired units with a water-cooled synchronous generator for producing three-phase power and heating water. They boast low operating noise of less than 49 dB(A) and maintenance is only required every 8,000 operating hours.
Schneider Electric, the front-runner in energy management and automation, has appointed Chris Collins as the new Country President for Ireland. Chris Collins takes over from Kelly Becker, who became the Zone President for UK & Ireland at the start of this year. Based in Maynooth, Chris Collins, who now reports to Kelly Becker, will play a vital role in directing the next phase of growth and strategy for Schneider Electric Ireland. Supporting Irish Customers Commenting on the appointment, Kelly Becker said: "With his extensive experience leading multi-disciplinary teams in the US, Chris is the ideal candidate to support our Irish customers with their sustainability transformations.” “Based on my time leading the Irish market, I know that Chris’s passion for leveraging digital innovation to drive sustainable change will be invaluable to our customers in the region." Chris Collins Profile Chris Collins began his career working in engineering and operations roles with field services teams. He then joined Schneider Electric as a Business Development Manager in 2003, responsible for building automation and security products in the North East region of the US. Chris has overseen Schneider’s smart buildings business, covering commercial and residential sectors in the US Over the past seventeen years, he has grown his career and held senior board-level positions at the multinational energy management brand. He is a seasoned business leader having overseen Schneider’s smart buildings business, covering both the commercial and residential sectors in the US, and most recently held the role of Vice President Systems Transformation, Digital Energy. Currently living in Dallas, Fort Worth, he plans to move with his family to Dublin later this year, after which he will be based in Schneider Electric’s Maynooth office. Support Early Career Development Chris Collins said: "Ireland is a real growth engine in the zone for Schneider Electric, so I'm thrilled to be taking up the Country President role and looking forward to meeting the fantastic team in person.” “The close-knit business structure in Ireland has significant advantages, bringing a broad range of expertise across industries together to provide more robust solutions for our customers.” "I am also passionate about driving and adding to the great work already carried out to support early career development initiatives in Ireland. This is particularly important to me as we strive to bring the best talent into our industry to help us achieve a new energy landscape and net-zero future."
Johnson Controls, the global company in smart, healthy and sustainable building solutions, will host its ‘Game On’ Rooftop HVAC Conference virtually on April 21, 2021. The interactive training conference will offer a free online learning experience, with in-depth presentations developed by our HVAC experts. The courses will cover the product and service of Johnson Controls, YORK and TempMaster commercial rooftop systems along with trending industry topics, which are available for professional development hour (PDH) credits. ‘Game On’ Rooftop Conference This conference is created for anyone involved in designing and specifying, building, installing or servicing commercial rooftop systems. Participants can create a personalized itinerary with 16 unique courses to choose from within three primary conference tracks: Industry and Application Education: The industry and application education track offers a number of trending industry topics, including the transition to low-GWP refrigerants, HVAC systems’ impact on a building’s indoor air quality and the effects of ASHRAE1 on package unit design, all for PDH credit. Product Information: The product information track will consist of interactive presentations with product managers about the company’s rooftop HVAC equipment and controls portfolio, along with open time to meet the product managers and ask questions. Product Start-up and Service: The product start-up and service track courses are hosted by Ducted Systems Academy trainers, as they demonstrate key setup and configurations on 15 - 80 ton commercial rooftop units and control panels, and answer participant questions. Importance of continuous learning in HVAC industry The HVAC industry is always changing, so continuous learning is no longer optional" “The HVAC industry is always changing, so continuous learning is no longer optional,” said Joseph Oliveri, Vice President and General Manager, Global Ducted Systems, Johnson Controls, adding “We’re thrilled to be able to offer this truly unique educational opportunity to give our customers a leg up in their business and also expose them to what we have to offer. It’s game on!” Participants will also be given the opportunity to connect with their representative to discuss future opportunities. In addition, after the conference, participants will get first access to the new ‘Game On’ website, which offers additional information, including 360-degree video tours of the Rooftop Center of Excellence in Norman, Oklahoma, the facility’s world-class testing lab and the Ducted Systems Academy in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. At the completion of the conference, participants will receive 10% off one future Ducted Systems Academy course and will have full access to recordings of all conference classes also through the ‘Game On’ website.
Property managers are tasked with tracking multiple assets and actions over several properties through all stages of development from planning to building and maintaining. Recently, the role of the property manager is becoming increasingly streamlined and data-driven through the adoption of smart technology. Progress in smarter property management The property industry continues to make progress in its digital transformation. In KPMG's 2019 PropTech Survey, the research team looked at the progress made in property’s relationship with technology. Key findings from the survey: 58% of real estate companies have a digital strategy in place (this is up from 52% in 2018 and 2019). 95% of real estate companies have someone responsible for leading digital transformation and innovation. In 62% of cases, this is a senior employee In 65% of cases, this person isn’t a digital or technology specialist Just 25% of respondents have a well-established data strategy that enables the right datasets to be captured and analyzed. From this survey data, it’s clear that property managers know that they need to digitally transform, but maybe at a loss on how to start. This can be achieved through undertaking the following advice in smart building management. Smart lighting Smart lighting controls allow building managers to control their building’s lighting remotely. Examples include: Installing occupancy sensors so that lights switch on and off automatically as people enter and exit rooms Controlling lighting colors and temperatures according to the time of day, the purpose of the room, or other environmental factors Setting automatic shut-downs and power-ups at certain times of the day These smart controls can save a lot of energy and create a more comfortable and productive working environment. Smart HVAC Smart heating and cooling systems help property managers to save energy, and thus save money and work towards carbon and environmental targets. With temperature and occupancy sensors, a smart HVAC system can control the temperature of a room or building in line with the desired comfort levels, space usage, and energy-efficiency without the need for manual intervention. Smart water safety Demonstrating Legionella compliance is an important, yet potentially time-consuming activity for building managers. In a manual system, an assigned person will need to run the water from each outlet in the building and take and record the water temperature at regular intervals. These records need to be kept for a period of at least five years. A smart, automated water temperature testing system takes the hard work out of maintaining Legionella compliance and mitigates the risk of Legionella bacteria infection. Smart fire safety The maintenance of fire safety equipment is a critical safety requirement for facility managers and building owners. However, the process can become quite overwhelming due to the extensive compliance and reporting requirements. Using smart technology to automatically monitor and manage fire safety service and maintenance activities is key to streamlining this process: Smart level sensors can monitor and report on the levels of fire extinguishers Automated record-keeping reduces the risk of human error or misplaced paperwork Smart maintenance schedules ensure that fire safety equipment is working properly Fire safety measures can be set to auto-deploy if the risk of fire is detected Instant alarms and messages alert managers immediately to any potential fire danger Smart utility monitoring Automated meter readers (AMRs) and smart meters are able to read electricity, gas, and water consumption data in real-time. By remotely monitoring utility consumption data, property managers can identify wastage and potential efficiencies, implementing changes for long-term savings all without the time and inaccuracy of taking manual readings. Another major benefit of access to accurate real-time utility consumption data and reports is simplified sub-metering. At all times, and from anywhere, the property manager will be a ble to pull the consumption data from individual tenants, allowing for greater accuracy and ease of invoicing. Smart solution Real-time data enables both monitoring capabilities and smart automation with instant alerts The uses of smart technology mentioned above are just a few of the many ways that the Internet of Things (IoT) is merging the physical world and the digital realm in buildings around the world. All of the smart technology applications in this article are enabled by installing sensors and tags onto different assets and connecting them via a central network, ultimately bridging the gap between the physical and the digital world. All data can be viewed on a central, cloud-based dashboard, which is key to helping managers to benefit from big data analytics. Real-time data enables both monitoring capabilities and smart automation, with instant alerts triggered according to predefined parameters. In summary, the benefits of smart technologies for the property industry include greater efficiency, less reliance on human resources, compliance with local regulations and obligations, convenience and comfort for tenants and residents, higher property valuation, cost-savings, and the potential for improved profitability.
Jobber, the globally renowned provider of home service management software, has unveiled Boost by Jobber, a grant program to further support the hard-working entrepreneurs within the home services sector. Aspiring entrepreneurs, new business owners, and long-time home service entrepreneurs are invited to apply for free grants, ranging from US$ 1,000 to US$ 20,000, depending on the category that their business qualifies for. Funding for Entreprenuers Twenty home service businesses across 50+ industries, such as lawn care, plumbing, residential cleaning, and painting, will be awarded US$ 100,000 funding in total. Applications are now open through May 5, 2021. Finalists will be announced in July 2021, with the list of winners announced in August 2021. Home service entrepreneurs impact their local communities and neighborhoods in meaningful ways" “Home service entrepreneurs impact their local communities and neighborhoods in meaningful ways,” said Sam Pillar, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) & Co-Founder at Jobber, adding “They employ millions of people while operating behind-the-scenes to keep homes, offices, and other spaces safe and in good working order, yet, despite their important contributions, small businesses are largely underserved when it comes to business financing.” Boost by Jobber grant program Sam Pillar adds, “Boost by Jobber helps address this gap by providing service business entrepreneurs with some extra working capital that may not otherwise be available through traditional banks and government grant programs.” Royce Ard, who owns My Amazing Maid with his wife, Tamara, further validates this statement. “Typically when I see a grant, I’m almost always assuming it's for a specific cohort and I wouldn’t qualify,” explained Royce Ard, adding “Loans are very, very, very hard to get. As far as going to a bank and getting US$ 10,000 for a small business like ours, you're not going to get it.” Grants Organized into categories Boost by Jobber grants are organized into categories that reflect various stages of company growth, from ideas on paper to recently launched ventures to established businesses, as well as an additional category for COVID-19 support. Five winners will be selected from each of the following: Almost-entrepreneurs (pre-business): Entrepreneurs who have the drive to start and run a home service business, however, are in need of funds to get started. New business owners (0 - 3 years): Entrepreneurs who are in the early stages of building their team, client list, and services. Experienced business owners (3+ years): Entrepreneurs who are ready to scale their mature business to the next growth stage. COVID-19 support: Entrepreneurs seeking financial support or resources for their team’s well-being. Helping home service businesses grow Jobber spoke service professionals to better understand the impact that extra cash flow could have on a business Jobber spoke with dozens of service professionals to better understand the impact that extra cash flow could have on a business, to create the grant categories, and to determine the dollar values assigned to each grant. Whether a company is looking to purchase new equipment, increase marketing dollars, launch a new service, train teams, or is in need of financial relief, funds from the Boost by Jobber program can make a big difference in helping small business owners be more successful. The value of cash flow “People don't understand the value of the cash flow,” stated Steven Knight, partner at Mosaic Home Services Ltd, adding “It's not necessarily only helping the business. It's helping the business owners as well with their ability to lead people. Cash flow helps them be a better business leader.” Boost by Jobber is one of many initiatives within Jobber’s home service ecosystem that is dedicated to supporting the home service entrepreneur, whether it’s through the company’s award-winning business management software, resources such as Jobber Academy, community building via the company’s Entrepreneurship Group on Facebook, and more.
In what can only be described as a very turbulent year, many businesses have had to shut their doors and have all but forgotten about the general upkeep of their sites. With priorities shifted to keeping companies afloat and staff employed, maintenance and servicing has taken a backseat, and many systems will be deteriorating unnoticed. It goes without saying that one of the first tasks that employers will have to tackle when returning to work is a deep clean. As we are still in the throes of a pandemic, a clean and disinfected workplace is the number one priority that needs to be ensured, before any staff can be welcomed back to work. This should be closely followed by maintenance of the site’s equipment. Importance of regular HVAC maintenance Regular HVAC maintenance is extremely important as it keeps systems performing efficiently and effectively Regular HVAC maintenance is extremely important as it keeps systems performing efficiently and effectively. The nature of HVAC maintenance does change depending on the time of year, and with some sites being shut for months and through different seasons, managers will need to review their current equipment to ensure it is compliant and working correctly as soon as possible as signs of normality start returning and facilities begin to reopen. While warehouses and factories may have still been operating in some capacity over the last 12 months, many office buildings have seen little to no employees for more than a year in some cases, therefore, risking deterioration and even damage to their systems going unnoticed and untreated. But with so many pieces of equipment at each site, it is often hard to know where to start and what to prioritize. Following HVAC manufacturer’s recommendations In order for businesses to keep functioning as best as they can and to avoid any more disruption, those in charge of maintenance and servicing need to be educated on how the conditions of a system affects the type of work it needs. Manufacturer’s recommendations should also be taken into account. To help define what these are and how to approach them, mechanical and electrical engineers recommend: The coils and pipes in HVAC equipment that are responsible for heat transfer are checked regularly, because if the equipment gets dirty, it won’t transfer heat and energy as well. Checking controls annually to ensure that the HVAC system is running properly, as control calibration can alter. By scheduling regular check-ups, accurate operation is maintained. Maintaining equipment with fans quarterly to maximize longevity. Three key areas include monitoring the impellers, belts and bearings for any dirt, wear and tear, friction or erosion. Keeping an eye on filters, as when they are clogged, it increases the pressure drop in a system, which makes fans work harder to maintain the same airflow. A quarterly clean is usually sufficient for most filters. This is also true of strainers in systems. Optimizing HVAC and electrical equipment With spring now upon us, businesses need to optimize their HVAC and electrical equipment for maximum efficiency With spring now upon us, businesses need to optimize their HVAC and electrical equipment for maximum efficiency. This includes reviewing the sequence of operations for a morning warm up and cool down. However, it’s important to remember that because of prolonged closures over the last 12 months, autumn and winter checks, and in some cases, even summer checks were not able to be carried out in 2020, so before the spring work begins, backdating the maintenance is a good place to start. Ensuring buildings’ energy efficiency With the help of experts, HVAC maintenance doesn’t have to be time-consuming and overwhelming, but it’s a critical part of maintaining an energy-efficient building that is both comfortable and reliable. With regular servicing and some basic knowledge of what is required, sites can maintain optimum efficiency all year round. Noise complaints can also be an issue, if HVAC maintenance isn’t carried out regularly. Spring is a good time for businesses to perform services on their equipment, prior to the summer months starting and should be used to ensure that condenser coils and air handler filters are both clean. The dirtier the equipment, the noisier and less efficient it becomes, which is bad news for any business. Preparing buildings for staff returning to work When a building is returning to normal occupancy after a lengthy closure, additional checks must be considered before reopening is discussed. When a building is initially mothballed, it must be prepared for long term vacancy, but many businesses will not have had this opportunity before the national lockdown, which basically entails that these checks will not have been carried out. After a building becomes unoccupied, it is not the case that maintenance activity should also stop After a building becomes unoccupied, it is not the case that maintenance activity should also stop. At the very least, the frequency of existing planned maintenance will change, but in some cases, more maintenance tasks are required in order to keep the site ticking over. This includes flushing of water systems, Legionella testing and insurance inspections to keep the property functional and compliant. Countering health and safety issues As the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions are lifted across the United Kingdom and many businesses are gradually reopening, it will present health and safety problems that have not been faced before and will very likely see a surge in services and maintenance being required. With this in mind, it is vital that maintenance becomes a priority as normal service is resumed to not only ensure efficiency, but also to make sure that no employee or visitor to a site is put in danger. Emerging from a surreal 12 months, there is no doubt that companies will still face challenges, so it is crucial that avoidable maintenance problems do not become one of them, so don’t delay in booking routine checks.
How grooved solutions have been making contractors and engineers reimagine the way they construct risers in vertical buildings? Enter into the right pub, or head to a city’s museum or town hall, and you can often find a picture of how the surrounding area used to look. An image from twenty years ago and the difference isn’t too vast. Fifty years back and there’s a definite change. A picture from over a hundred years ago and it’s practically unrecognizable. And what’s the common theme running through these images? Cities are getting taller. As more people migrated to urban areas, developers saw the need to go higher. But with this comes its own unique set of challenges. How can the safety of ground floor be transferred to, in the most extreme case, level 163? Grooved mechanical pipe joining solutions When it comes to high-rise buildings, there are a number of potential challenges for a piping engineer To find out how grooved mechanical pipe joining solutions are helping developers & engineers go higher, we spoke to Matthew Strohm, Director of Product Development (Piping System Design) at Victaulic. When it comes to high-rise buildings, there are a number of potential challenges that a piping engineer will need to take into consideration, most of which relate to thermal movement and the resulting forces on the building. Other issues such as seismic activity and building creep (the natural movement of a building due to settlement) also need to be taken into account. Compensating for thermal expansion and contraction Specifically related to piping systems and subsequently, pipe joining solutions, is the unique problem of having to compensate for thermal expansion and contraction, while at the same time, accommodating for higher pressure. Change in pipe diameter is not an uncommon concern for engineers, however, providing a solution which could operate at a pressure gauge of 25 bars, or the fluctuating temperature of water, presents its own challenges. It’s with these issues in mind that engineers choose their joining solutions, which is why these are the very criteria we set our Victaulic pipe joining solutions against. Grooved vs. Traditional Pipe Joining For decades, the traditional solutions for joining pipes have been welding, threading or flanging. These are good solutions to choose from, but there is a distinct lack of flexibility in a solution that fuses or flanges system components together. This is where flexible grooved couplings come in. They are solutions that allow controlled linear and angular movement at each joint to accommodate not only for thermal expansion and contraction, but also building sway and creep. So how do flexible grooved couplings manage this? It’s essentially down to the design of their components. The dimensions of the pipe coupling housing key is narrower than the pipe groove, allowing room for movement. Furthermore, the width of the pipe coupling housing allows for pipe end separation, which in turn allows the grooved pipe joint to accommodate movement. Benefits of Grooved couplings There are many benefits of grooved couplings, with space-saving being a key advantage on projects, both large and small There are many benefits of grooved couplings, with space-saving being a key advantage on projects, both large and small. As many project managers and engineers know, saving on space can be the key to unlocking extra value above initial planning. Additionally, grooved couplings are perfectly placed to accommodate for piping movement, whereas welded joints that in their very nature are designed to be fixed in place, need to have an area of space to allow for a welded expansion loop or alternatively, enough space to allow the star-pattern tightening of a flanged flex connector. Saving time, money and labor Besides the savings on space, grooved connections offer contractors savings in three key areas: time, money and labor. The installation-ready design of Victaulic’s grooved couplings allow for an easier installation, meaning a process which might take 30 minutes through a welded solution for instance, can now take just five minutes. As any contractor will testify to, this is valuable time that can be used for other parts of the project. With a reduction in time comes savings in cost and labor. Naturally, less labor is used for the same job and in the case of grooved couplings, less skilled labor is required (in comparison to the high skill level needed for welded joints). It’s these aspects that will ultimately deliver contractors with valuable project savings. Grooved connections offer savings in three key areas: time, money and labor Mechanical riser solutions There are 3 ways to accommodate for thermal movement within risers using a grooved mechanical system: The first method is called top of riser free-floating method and involves installing rigid couplings on the riser and two flexible couplings on the horizontal adjacent piping at the top of the riser, which can reduce the need for riser clamps or other structural during installation and allows the system to move freely within the design tolerances. The second method involves working with grooved expansion loops that help to save up as much as 2/3rd of the size of welded U-shaped expansion loops and avoids forced welded pipe deflection. While welded expansion loops require eight welded joints to assemble, the forces exerted on the joint are far greater than those applied on a grooved expansion loop, and generate greater stress, which ultimately requires larger anchors and guides in order to direct the movement. The third method is working with grooved expansion joints instead of traditional in-line expansion joints, which typically have wear parts and manufacturer-recommended maintenance cycles of five years, which also poses problems due to riser accessibility once the construction is complete. Grooved expansion joints like the Victaulic Style 155 are maintenance-free for the life of the system. Importance of anchors In a system using only flexible joints, risers are installed with anchors at the top and bottom and the piping guided every other length to prevent angular deflection at the joints within the piping run. Anchors distribute the movement forces across the structure and also provide the important task of directing pipe movement. At the pipe anchor location, there will be no differential movement between the piping and the building structure, which forces the pipe to thermally expand or contract from that location. This allows the design engineer to control how and where the movement in a system occurs and to provide the best solution to accommodate that movement. A10 Grooved Riser Anchors upgraded A good manufacturer will always listen to customer demand, especially in an evolving market A good manufacturer will always listen to customer demand, especially in an evolving market. Off the back of strong feedback from contractors, Victaulic recently upgraded its A10 Grooved Riser Anchors to a standard product. With the primary functions of carrying the weights and forces that act downward to the base of the riser and connecting the riser to the rest of the structure, the anchor has been providing sturdy support for some of the tallest buildings around the world. Future trends for high-rise buildings One trend already taking place, and I expect to continue, is contractors bringing riser experts into the project at an earlier stage. It just seems to make logistical sense to operate in this fashion. it’s a more efficient use of time to collaborate early in the process. I believe contractors and engineers will seek assistance from companies such as us to help design blueprints together, working in tandem to produce the right solution. Vertical buildings are on the rise. For generations, people have been moving to urban areas, putting greater demand on housing residents and employees. Through the use of grooved coupling solutions as an alternative to traditional methods, contractors can benefit from greater flexibility, reliability, ease of installation and ultimately and most importantly, speed of the installation process.
Air conditioning has become a huge part of our lives whether we know it or not. Most offices have them so that members of staff can enjoy a regulated working environment without having to shiver or overheat. This often makes the office a nice place to work in and helps staff to stay productive throughout the day, regardless of what is going on with the weather. Commercial air conditioning is something that we often take for granted because we barely realize that it’s there. The only time that we notice it is when it breaks down or it doesn’t function as efficiently as we want it to. Why is it important to regularly maintain an HVAC unit? When an AC unit isn’t looked after in the right way, there can be a number of things that can either go wrong Air conditioning maintenance is something that so many people overlook. This can be for a whole host of reasons, including whether it’s that they are unaware that it needs regular maintenance or they think it’s too costly to take on. These are often the most common reasons that air conditioning units aren’t looked after properly. When an air conditioner unit isn’t looked after in the right way, there can be a number of things that can either go wrong and disable air conditioning or just hinder its ability to do its job. Temperatures With a well looked after, fully functioning commercial air conditioner, you’ll find that the temperatures are very accurate and work as intended. This means that everything within your unit is in top condition and working well. For example, on a hot day, when you set your thermostat to a low temperature, you’ll get exactly that. Over time you may find that your air conditioning starts to struggle a little. This can be in a few different forms. You may detect that it takes a lot longer for your air conditioning to get up or down to the right temperature. This can be for a whole host of reasons and so keeping it regularly maintained will help to reduce this risk. Cost-effective As mentioned, a poorly maintained air conditioning unit will likely mean that it takes longer to get to the right temperatures or it may not be efficient enough to even reach the temperature you’re after. With that in mind, it can start to cost a lot more to run your HVAC system in this state. Due to the fact that it might take longer to reach your preferred temperature, you could end up paying more as time goes on. If you don’t rectify this problem, you may end up with an air conditioning unit that no longer works enough to be worth running. This will have adverse effects on the working environment and your members of staff. Safety of staff Depending on where you are in the world, heatstroke is also a very dangerous problem One of the biggest concerns for a business owner, the HR department and the individuals themselves, is that the office needs to be suitable to work in. From a health and safety standpoint, employees need to be safe and protected. Often air conditioning maintenance falls under this and is a necessity. Depending on where you are in the world, heatstroke is also a very dangerous problem. Having an inefficient air conditioning unit that can’t keep up with the rising temperatures could potentially put your employees at risk! The same also goes for those in more densely populated cities like London, New York City and even France. The air quality in and around these cities can be awful and so having air conditioning to clean and filter the air before it arrives in your office can make a big difference. Preventative maintenance Preventative maintenance is possibly one of the most important parts of owning any sort of machinery. Whether we’re talking about a car or air conditioning, preventative maintenance is a must. Preventative maintenance is just the act of regular maintenance throughout the lifetime of a product. It often involves changing of parts or fluids, even if they don’t need it in that instant. For example, if you take your car for a service and the engine oil is still sort of okay but will need replacing in 2 months’ time, would you just leave it or get it changed there and then? This type of preventative maintenance is designed to make sure that everything is in top condition and works perfectly all of the time. The biggest problem we face is that people think preventative maintenance isn’t necessary and while, yes your AC system will run without it, it’s likely to cost you so much more in the long run and could end up upsetting your staff too with a drop in temperatures. Employee satisfaction Commercial air conditioning is still a huge part of employee satisfaction Although at the time of writing this, many people are working from home, commercial air conditioning is still a huge part of employee satisfaction. Having an operating office, warehouse, school or indeed home, with air conditioning can help to keep people happy throughout the year. As a business owner, HR or general manager, it’s part of your job to keep employees happy and working in an optimal environment. Without this, employees may start to get fed up with attending an office that’s way too hot to work in. Importance of a regular maintenance plan A regular maintenance plan is going to help you keep your air conditioning system in the best state possible. You‘ll be able to detect faults and malfunctions before they have a direct impact on your commercial air conditioning system and prevent any further damage. Through the utilization of a proper plan, you should find that your system has a longer lifespan than those that don’t and should work more efficiently saving you time, money and the hassle of a broken system. Keeping your staff members happy is also a must and so dedicating some of your budget to air conditioning maintenance might just help you to keep morale and employee satisfaction on the right level.
The cruise ship industry has cracked the code on keeping passengers and crew safe from the coronavirus (COVID-19) spread, including changes to on-board HVAC systems to use more outside air and to filter out particles as small as the novel coronavirus. The industry, which voluntarily suspended worldwide operations at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, under the guidance of international and national health authorities, plans to resume worldwide operations fully later in 2021. Health protocols to mitigate COVID-19 risk The cruise ship industry resumed sailing in parts of Europe, Asia and South Pacific in July 2020 The cruise ship industry resumed sailing in parts of Europe, Asia and South Pacific in July 2020 and completed more than 200 sailings by the end of 2020. The success of these early sailings demonstrated the effectiveness of new protocols to mitigate risk of COVID-19 among passengers, crews and at destinations. The industry will resume operation in the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and elsewhere in 2021. Cruise operators, such as Royal Caribbean, have implemented new HVAC systems as part of the protocols. Supplying 100% fresh and filtered air Royal Caribbean says its HVAC system now continuously supplies 100% fresh and filtered air from outdoors to all indoor spaces. There is a total air change up to 12 times an hour in staterooms and about 15 changes per hour in large public spaces. Fan coil units provide an extra layer of protection in local spaces, such as public venues and staterooms, continuously scrubbing the air of pathogens and using MERV 13 filters to capture aerosols between 1.0 and 3.0 microns with 90% efficacy. Bio-aerosol assessment study Royal Caribbean participated in a bio-aerosol assessment of its ‘Oasis of the Seas’ ship by the University of Nebraska Medical Center. The study involved releasing billions of 1-micron aerosol-sized microspheres, each containing a uniquely DNA-barcoded inert virus surrogate, at pre-selected spaces throughout the ship. The test was intended to determine the efficiency and effectiveness of the vessel’s indoor air management strategies and to understand spread of aerosols through the HVAC system. Low risk of cross-contamination of air Testing results led to minimal changes, such as ensuring air exchanges are close to hospital standards and using MERV 13 filters Over a week aboard the Oasis of the Seas, scientists released billions of the individually tagged microspheres and then tracked where they went and how long they lingered in the air, and on surfaces. Testing results led to minimal changes, such as ensuring air exchanges are close to hospital standards and using MERV 13 filters. The study confirmed that cross-contamination of air between adjacent public spaces is extremely low and undetectable in most test cases. Royal Caribbean’s Healthy Sail Center determined seven important elements the cruise line can do to manage indoor air and keep it clean. These elements include: Enhanced filtration to the highest level possible Optimize airflow patterns Use negative pressurization in isolation rooms Minimize unfiltered, re-circulated air Increase number of air changes per hour Use portable HEPA filters in congregate areas Maximize outdoor functions and physical distancing Facilitating return to operation of cruise ships At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, between March 1 and July 10, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) discovered nearly 3,000 cases of COVID -19 or suspected COVID-19 infections and 34 deaths across 123 cruise ships. In October 2020, the CDC lifted its no-sail order, laying out guidelines for big-ship cruising to resume operations in U.S. waters. The Cruise Lines International Association (CIA), which represents 95% of the cruise ship industry, has said its members will return when the time is right and that timing will be based on factors, including input from scientists and medical experts. Cruise companies also have new technologies available to them now. For example, the Italian company, Integra provides an air sanitizer that uses an odorless disinfectant to combat airborne illnesses. It can be installed in 15 minutes.
The demographics of the HVAC workforce are changing and more women are being welcomed into the HVAC industry in a wider variety of roles. In part, the changes are because of necessity as Baby Boomers retire from the workforce and leave a labor and skills gap to be filled. HVAC commercial service business, HB McClure Company, based out of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, is embracing change and encouraging more women to consider a career in the HVAC workspace. The company’s female employees are happy to speak up about the advantages of working in the HVAC industry. Promoting women in HVAC industry Kara Boeckel began working at HB McClure Company as an HVAC technician and is now a Preventive Maintenance Coordinator. Back in trade school, she was the only woman in her class. She faced negative preconceptions about her capabilities compared to male counterparts and there were no female role models. Women were 50% of the U.S. labor force in 2019, but only 2% of employees in the HVAC field were women Despite the challenges, Boeckel found her vocational pathway. Now, her peers at HB McClure Company give her support and help her get past any fear of being a minority in a male-dominated field. “Now I don’t see being a female as a weakness,” said Kara Boeckel, adding “I see it as a strength.” Women were 50% of the U.S. labor force in 2019, but only 2% of employees in the HVAC field were women. And that number had increased from an even lower figure eight years before – 0.6%. Need for more HVAC technicians According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, HVAC employment will likely increase 15% through 2026. The growth, combined with the current labor shortage, means technicians are needed to fill the estimated 115,000 new positions that the industry expects to have available by 2022. If trends continue, many of them are likely to be women. However, more awareness is needed to attract employees of any gender to the HVAC market. “Students are not as exposed to the prospects in this industry,” said Shelly Matter, HB McClure’s Director of Business Development, adding “There is a shortage of skilled tradespeople, male and female.” Monetary benefits in HVAC After completing the required field training and certifications, many possibilities open up for women to grow their career, with job positions ranging from Foreman to Project Manager, Engineering to Sales. Shelly Matter has been in the commercial/industrial HVAC industry for more than 20 years. Now, she makes presentations at expos, conferences and local school career fairs. The number one question among prospective HVAC employees that she meets is, ‘How much does it pay?’ Shelly Matter is happy to assure students that it’s possible to make a generous living in HVAC, after one establishes capability and reliability. Challenges and opportunities in HVAC The best part is meeting wonderful customers and helping them solve their commercial HVAC problems" Kelly Overlander, New Business Development Representative at HB McClure, was formerly the owner of a successful hair salon for more than 15 years. After she sold her salon and entered the mechanical trades industry, Overlander is proud of her ability to bring value to customers. “My job delivers a variety of challenges and many opportunities for professional growth,” said Kelly Overlander, adding “The best part is meeting wonderful customers and helping them solve their commercial HVAC problems.” Importance of role models Having good role models is a critical aspect of women seeking to enter the HVAC business. Angela Klingler, HB McClure New Business Developer, sees a need for more female trade school instructors and appreciates the value of women surrounding themselves with people who have expertise and then learning from their strengths. She advocates mentoring, sharing industry opportunities and partnering with organizations, such as the Partnership for Career Development, to help bridge the gap between industry and education. It all comes down to identifying what one is passionate about, and then combining that passion with a career that aligns with those passions. “When you go to a nursing home and the heater isn’t working, you not only fix it, but you have taken care of bringing warmth to someone’s grandmother, and she’s thanking you,” said Kelly Overlander, adding “Working in HVAC is very rewarding.”
The computing power we know as the Internet actually resides in millions of data centers that house rows and rows of computer servers. And each data center represents a unique HVAC challenge: How to keep the equipment cool, the air pure and the humidity low. Providing the ideal operating conditions for a room full of computers requires the best that the HVAC market can offer. Data centers come in all shapes, sizes and configurations. Some are huge facilities that serve the needs of giants, such as Google, Amazon and Microsoft. Others are smaller and might contain the servers for a single company. In every case, there is expensive equipment operating, creating enormous amounts of heat and there is important data to be preserved. Air quality and temperature monitoring Data centers have a narrower range of acceptable environmental factors when compared to typical buildings Air quality and temperatures are monitored around the clock, and even small discrepancies can undermine the whole operation. Data centers have a narrower range of acceptable environmental factors when compared to typical buildings. ASHRAE provides guidelines and best practices for mission-critical facilities, which should be followed by any contractor working with data centers. The layout of a data center is an important consideration – what is the location of servers and other key equipment? Appropriate parameters in various zones ensure correct temperatures and humidity levels. Managing power loads Access must be maintained to the electrical infrastructure and supplies, and attention must be paid to electric loads. Typically, an HVAC system uses its own electrical supply, separate from the system that the servers depend on. This approach helps with managing power loads. Often server rooms have raised floors to provide technicians access to the infrastructures. Fans placed under the floor can discharge air in a wider pattern for more uniform cooling. Server rooms may also have higher ceilings to provide room for large equipment racks. These features can impact air flow, temperature and humidity and should be incorporated into HVAC system designs. ‘Hot aisle, cold aisle’ approach Managing higher heat loads of computer servers arranged in rows at data centers can use a ‘hot aisle, cold aisle’ approach. Cold air intakes and hot air exhausts face alternating rows. Because of moisture concerns, only plumbing that relate to fire suppression should be located near the server rooms. Server rooms typically do not have windows or outside doors or outside-facing walls. Air filtration For air quality, filters eliminate the smallest particles such as dust or pollen. HEPA filters are effective For air quality, filters eliminate the smallest particles such as dust or pollen. HEPA filters are effective. Other factors include new motor types, fewer moving parts, and more sensors to provide predictive maintenance. Preventive maintenance is a better approach than facing the possible dire consequences of an emergency. Keeping spare parts on hand is a good way to minimize risk. Variable-speed fans save energy, and they use motors that do not require belts, pulleys or bearing hardware for cleaner operation and less contamination, and less frequent maintenance. However, monthly HVAC inspections should be implemented to ensure maximum data center uptime. Mission-critical HVAC systems Mission-critical HVAC systems for data centers fall into two categories. One is Computer Room Air Conditioners (CRAC), which use compressors and are deployed for perimeter cooling. The other is Computer Room Air Handlers (CRAH), which use water from a centralized chiller and a control valve to provide cooling. Stand-alone ultrasonic units take the place of internal humidifiers on CRAC and CRAH units.
Very few homeowners ignore the need for keeping temperatures in their homes at comfortable levels. One isn’t going to overlook the need for an effective heater when it is freezing cold outside, right? Of course not. That need is obvious. Not all needs are quite as obvious, though, even if they are equally important. For instance, the need for great indoor air quality in one’s home. Make IAQ services part of on-going HVAC services in Loveland. The problem with indoor air quality is that there are just so many different ways in which it may suffer. Fortunately, the IAQ professionals on the company’s team ensure that, no matter what is wrong with the indoor air quality, one will have the right solutions in place. Humidity Issues The company is sure that some people have little experience with portable humidifier and dehumidifier units Humidity is a tough nut to crack. Too little humidity in the home is certainly not desirable and can have a number of unpleasant consequences. These can include dry, itchy skin, nosebleeds, increased instances of illness, and more. However, too much humidity is not great, either. If the air in the home is too humid, then one may run into musty odors, issues with warping wooden floorboards, wood rot, and even the promotion of mold growth. The company is sure that some people have little experience with portable humidifier and dehumidifier units. However, if one is serious about optimizing humidity in the home, these are not what one should choose. One should want whole-house solutions to humidity problems, and that means that wanting a whole-house humidifier and/or dehumidifier installed in the residence. And that means hiring a professional to do the right job. Airborne Pollutants Perhaps the most common issue that homeowners encounter with their indoor air quality is that of airborne pollutants. Dust, dirt, pet dander, pollen, and other debris can get into the air in the home. Also about breathing all of those pollutants into the lungs. But, what can one do about it, right? It’s not like one is going to ditch Fido just because he sheds. The company suggests that there may be a way to completely eliminate the risk of airborne pollutants making their way into the home. However, one can remove the pollutants from the air that they breathe quite effectively with the right equipment in place. Whole-house air filtration systems, for example, or more advanced air cleaning systems, may be used to clean the air that fills the home. Biological Pollutants It may sound scary and the company is not trying to alarm the people. However, it has to be said. Biological pollutants in the home pose a health threat. With UV germicidal lights, one can destroy biological pollutants like viruses, mold spores, and bacteria that are putting health at risk.
Florida-based tanker transportation and fleet management company, Oakley Transport is no stranger to success. Its roots date back to 1961, starting out as an independent citrus fruit broker, before entering into the harvest and hauling sector of the citrus industry. Specialized tanker transport In 1986, Oakley Transport diversified into the transport of liquid food grade products and quickly became one of the top transporters in specialized tanker transportation services. And just four years ago, the company expanded once again, however, this time into the reefer segment. “With a request from key partners, we entered the refrigerated side of business in late 2016 to move many of the finished goods that came from the tanker division. It was a natural way to further diversify and a great growth opportunity,” said Thomas E. Oakley of Oakley Transport. It allowed us an opportunity to introduce the Thermo King brand into our fleet" Tom adds, “It also allowed us an opportunity to introduce the Thermo King brand into our fleet, an opportunity that continues to expand.” ISO 9001 and ISO 22000 certification Those opportunities are no accident. According to Thomas E. Oakley, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Oakley Transport, “The company has always aligned its vision with core values – and that has provided competitive advantages. Indeed Oakley Transport’s reputation for reliable service, dependable drivers, and industry leadership as early adopters of the FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act and ELDs, has earned the organization certification in ISO 9001 and ISO 22000 standards, positioning them well throughout the industry.” TriPac Evolution auxiliary power units Reliability of equipment is paramount for Oakley Transport as it ensures timely deliveries, offers performance efficiencies and contributes to driver retention rates. Oakley was pleased with the quality its first Thermo King reefers provided so in 2019, decided to give the TriPac Evolution auxiliary power unit (APU) a try as well. The company conducted a pilot test of Thermo King’s TriPac Evolution APUs with the support of Thermo King of the Southeast (TKSE), the local Thermo King dealership. Reduced fuel consumption and emissions “We were looking to improve truck idle times and keep them in the single digits – nine percent or less,” said Pete Nativo, Vice President of fleet maintenance for Oakley Transport, adding “While APUs reduce fuel consumption, emissions and noise levels, they also keep the drivers comfortable – by providing heat and power for amenities that make road life a little more like home life.” Feedback from our drivers has been good – they like the TriPac’s easy-to-use controls" Pete Nativo adds, “Feedback from our drivers has been good – they like the TriPac’s easy-to-use controls. They also believe it starts easier. Most importantly, the TriPac has been very reliable. TKSE is a great local partner and if something does go wrong out on the road, Thermo King’s expansive dealer network allows for easy serviceability for our long-haul drivers.” He further states, “Bottom line is that Thermo King of the Southeast and Thermo King have proven to be trusting and reliable partners who offer consistent, quality service that aligns with our own standards.” Reliability of Tripac Evolution APUs The pilot of five TriPac Evolution auxiliary power units (APUs) in 2019 led to an order of approximately 200 more in 2020, demonstrating Oakley’s commitment to driver comfort and ultimately, retention. “We were really excited to work with Oakley Transport on the TriPac pilot as it allowed us the opportunity to demonstrate the performance and reliability of our APU with actual documentation on idling time, fuel consumption and more,” said Rob Race, Senior Account Executive at Thermo King of the Southeast (TKSE).
Karl Reeves, CEO of Consolidated Elevator Industries announced that his company has taken their initial delivery of Delos air filtration systems. Although one may only be in the cab for a few seconds, protecting commercial elevator passengers is one of the top priorities in the nationwide effort to keep buildings safe in the era of COVID-19. That's why at Consolidated Elevator, they’ve identified air filtration as one of the first and most important ways to ensure the confined space of an Elevator cab meets high standards of health and safety. Delos air filtration solutions To accomplish this, they have partnered with wellness experts at Delos to provide top-of-the-line air filtration options for the building owners of New York City. The Delos air filtration solutions installed by Consolidated Elevator feature High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filtration to help improve the quality of the air in the elevator cab. The Delos solution helps reduce air particles that may carry bacteria and viruses by targeting allergens, toxins, pathogens, pollen and other pollutants in the air. Even with air purification in place, face coverings should also be required at all times while in, and waiting for, the elevator. Building managers should ensure that there is signage stating this policy that is visible from a distance. This aligns with CDC recommendations on the use of cloth face coverings "in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain" to help slow the spread of the virus.
Boiler manufacturers Baxi Heating and Worcester Bosch have installed hydrogen burning boilers at ‘HyStreet’, in specially built demonstration houses at DNV GL’s specialist test site at Spadeadam in Northumberland, United Kingdom. The site has been used to complete over 200 tests, researching and proving the safety of converting homes and gas networks to hydrogen. The project is part of H21, a Network Innovation Competition project sponsored by Ofgem. Northern Gas Networks is leading the project with partners Cadent, Scottish Gas Networks, Wales & West Utilities, National Grid, DNV GL and the Health and Safety Executive’s science division. Combi boilers installed H21 is demonstrating how existing natural gas networks can be re-purposed to safely carry 100% hydrogen H21 is demonstrating how existing natural gas networks can be re-purposed to safely carry 100% hydrogen. For the first demonstration, both Worcester Bosch and Baxi Heating have installed combi boilers into the houses on HyStreet. The boilers have been developed as part of the UK Government-funded Hy4Heat program, which is also supporting the development of hydrogen-ready gas cookers, fires and gas meters. As around 85% of UK homes currently rely on natural gas for heating and hot water supply, re-purposing the natural gas grid for use with hydrogen would mean a low disruption option for householders to decarbonize their heating, without the need for extensive changes to their existing system. Tackling carbon emissions due to home heating Tackling carbon emissions resulting from home heating is utterly essential and one of the most difficult challenges in achieving net-zero emissions, given the need to make adaptations in almost every home. A growing library of studies and reports conclude that all viable scenarios for the UK to hit net-zero include hydrogen as a vital component. That is why Government and industry are working on various projects across the United Kingdom. Wide deployment of hydrogen boilers Tim Harwood, Northern Gas Networks’ Project Director for H21, said “Seeing the boilers in situ at Spadeadam is an exciting step in the journey to realizing our goal of a gas network transporting 100% hydrogen to customers. The hydrogen boiler looks and feels just like the natural gas version we all have today and is just as user-friendly, showing that a transition could cause minimal disruption to customers.” Dan Allason, Head of Research and Innovation, at DNV GL’s Spadeadam Research and Testing, said “Eight out of ten homes in the UK use a gas boiler to heat their homes and provide hot water and replacing all gas boilers with electric alternatives could be extremely costly. Both of the boiler manufacturers have developed options with their hydrogen ready prototypes to assist the switch to a lower carbon alternative.” Proof of concept and public acceptability We are delighted to be able to demonstrate this innovative new technology in a real-life setting in the UK" Dan adds, “Having these fitted to the HyStreet demonstration project at Spadeadam gives gravitas to the proof of concept and public acceptability of appliances such as these. The boilers are one of the first important steps.” Karen Boswell, Managing Director of Baxi Heating, said “This is an important step forward on our hydrogen journey and we are delighted to be able to demonstrate this innovative new technology in a real-life setting in the UK.” Zero-carbon alternative to natural gas Carl Arntzen, the Chief Executive Officer of Worcester Bosch commented “It is fantastic to see our prototype hydrogen boiler running successfully at this demonstration site. The boiler has operated seamlessly in its first month of operation and continues to provide both heating and hot water.” Carl adds, “It proves that hydrogen gas has great potential as a zero-carbon alternative to natural gas for heating and hot water in the UK and beyond. These initial tests are incredibly encouraging and will hopefully give key decision makers confidence to deploy hydrogen gas as a fuel for the future.”
Accommodating significant fleet growth and modernization, one of North America’s renowned refrigerated trucking companies, KLLM Transport Services, is adding 1,400 new Utility trailers refrigerated by Carrier Transicold units, equipped with the eSolutions telematics platform and TRU-Mount solar charging systems. Carrier Transicold is a part of Carrier Global Corporation, a globally renowned provider of healthy, safe and sustainable building and cold chain solutions. “Thanks to continued investments to replace and upgrade our equipment and technology, we are, today, a 57-year-old company with one of the youngest, most advanced fleets on the highway,” said Jim Richards, President of KLLM, a Top-3 refrigerated carrier, headquartered in Richland, Mississippi. Carrier Transicold refrigeration units “As a premier service provider, with more than 6,000 refrigerated trailers and domestic intermodal containers serving 48 states and Mexico, it is vital that we continuously renew our fleet,” said Richards, adding “This latest investment helps us keep our fleet new and modern for improved service, less downtime and to provide our customers with the advantage of the most current technology.” The new Carrier Transicold systems include 1,325 X4 7500 single-temperature trailer refrigeration units to be deployed by KLLM, and 75 Vector 8600MT multi-temperature units to be used by KLLM’s Dallas-based Frozen Foods Express (FFE) business. All refrigeration systems will be installed on 53-foot Utility 3000R insulated trailers by Carrier Transicold and Utility Trailer dealer, Southern States Utility Trailer Sales Inc., also located in Richland. eSolutions telematics platform Carrier Transicold’s eSolutions platform helps refrigerated transporters operate more efficiently by improving visibility of their cold chain assets and intelligently providing a centralized data stream about their transport refrigeration units (TRUs) and cargo. In addition to supplying critical data, such as temperatures, location and movement, the eSolutions platform will provide two-way control as well as analytic and diagnostic information about its refrigeration units. TRU-Mount solar charging system Carrier’s TRU-Mount solar charging system helps maintain the charge of the refrigeration unit battery Carrier’s high-performance TRU-Mount solar charging system helps maintain the charge of the refrigeration unit battery, which supports the eSolutions telematics system, even when the refrigeration unit is off. “The fact that the eSolutions system is integrated with the Carrier Transicold units is very important to us,” stated Jim Richards, adding “It will give us new abilities to download data and upgrade over the air, including our IntelliSet profiles, something we are certainly excited about.” IntelliSet feature software application The IntelliSet feature is a software application included with Carrier Transicold’s APX refrigeration unit controllers that allows custom configuration of multiple refrigeration parameters to create profiles based on specific commodities or customer preferences. With the eSolutions system, IntelliSet configurations can be selected remotely, and parameter updates can be done over the air rather than manually, saving time and resources. For additional details about Carrier Transicold’s transport refrigeration units, eSolutions platform and solar charging options, turn to the experts in Carrier Transicold’s North America dealer network.
Adcock Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Ltd. (Adcock) looks after all the air conditioning, water chillers and AHU equipment at the Birmingham site, where Smurfit Kappa provides a reliable service for cardboard and paper recycling. Quarterly maintenance and service Adcock carries out maintenance visits every quarter and has engineers on hand to provide 24-hours support to assist the smooth site’s operation. The condenser and evaporator coils get clogged up quickly due to the humid conditions and they also corrode because of the acidic atmosphere on site. Corrosion occurs within 3 to 4 years, even after being treated with specialist long-lasting corrosion protection. Leak repair formula to repair evaporator coils Adcock is currently looking to test a new leak repair formula that will temporarily repair coils Adcock Refrigeration and Air Conditioning’s biggest challenge with the HVAC system maintenance and repair work was to cope with the need for quick turnaround of repairs and reduce the long lead times that are very common for evaporator coil replacements, largely due to the need for the coils to be specially coated. Adcock is, therefore, currently looking to test a new leak repair formula that will temporarily repair coils. The company has designed and installed a number of 100% back-up systems in critical areas at Smurfit Kappa’s Birmingham site, so as to cut down-time and keep it to a minimal, especially during any breakdown. Complete turkey solution Adcock has developed their technology through meticulous research and development. Their engineers carry out a comprehensive survey, provide precision design and fast and efficient installations, in order to provide a complete 'turnkey' solution to cater to varied climate and temperature setting needs for commercial and residential HVAC systems.
Round table discussion
The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical objects embedded with sensors, software and other technologies to facilitate connecting and exchanging data with other devices and systems over the internet. Use of the IoT is expanding among both business and residential applications. However, there are hurdles to overcome, including security, privacy and networking challenges. As more HVAC devices embrace the IoT, we asked our Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the impact of the Internet of Things (IoT) on the HVAC market?