Turning public sector buildings into mini-power stations

It’s likely that every public sector building will have a solar installation on a flat or south-facing rooftop by 2025. But only those who act now will benefit from subsidies, writes Robert Goss, MD Conergy UK

There are not many chances in life to do the right thing and improve the bottom line. Right now, there is an excellent opportunity for the managers of public sector buildings to take advantage of existing subsidies to lower their energy outgoings or generate cheaper energy for tenants. Using the energy produced locally also reduces transmission losses – read “waste” – and takes pressure off the grid.

In fact, it may surprise you to learn that when it comes to solar photovoltaic (PV) power, Britain is now Europe’s leading nation with more than 2,000 megawatts (MW) being installed last year.

The UK government’s position is that solar PV is an important part of its energy portfolio, ranking alongside nuclear, gas, coal and wind. But while solar supports 16,000 jobs up and down the country, from Devon to Durham, just a handful of the nation’s council offices, hospitals, schools and social housing have been kitted out with panels so far.

Government planning data show that almost all very large solar projects, which tend to be ground mounted, are privately owned. One notable exception is a publicly owned project at a former RAF base where Norfolk County Council is building a 50 MW solar farm, under a 25-year lease to a renewable energy company.

The growth of solar has been meteoric. A decade ago, solar panel prices were as high as £4.00 per watt, and the global market for solar was 500MW installed per year. That is equivalent to the peak production of one small gas power plant. Today, prices are around £0.40 per watt, and the global market in 2014 was over 42,000MW – equal to the peak capacity of more than 40 nuclear power stations.

Remarkably, the size of the UK market puts us ahead of much sunnier Mediterranean countries. Britain even installed more solar panels than Germany last year, where nearly 6 per cent of electricity already comes from solar. Germany is still the world leader in cumulative installed capacity, but we are growing fast, and are likely to be the biggest European market for solar again this year.

Utilities are undergoing a seismic shift as a result of solar power. Last December Germany’s biggest utility, E.ON, decided to hive off all its conventional fossil fuel generation to focus on renewables and energy services. E.ON said that its new strategy was a result of rising renewable energy competitiveness. The same will happen here.

Solar farms of up to 15 acres are eligible for Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs) which utilities are required to acquire to meet targets for renewably produced electricity, and have been hugely successful. However the government increasingly favours the installation of solar on rooftops and there is a significant opportunity for public sector buildings – especially those with plenty of roof-space.

The government favours rooftops for three reasons. First, energy losses in the UK grid are significant – around 7.2 per cent. This is reduced by using energy generated locally, by workers in public buildings during the day for example, rather than by feeding it into the grid. Secondly, because roof-top solar power generates about three times more jobs per megawatt installed than large, ground-mounted solar farms. And thirdly, because Britain has significant manufacturing capability in manufacturing solar components including panels, mounting systems and meters.

For the same reasons, solar panels are attractive in social housing, where they can also help the less well-off by cutting energy bills and keeping prices down and predictable long-term. Much of the benefit to date from solar power has gone to large landowners for solar farms, so more installations on social housing would be a welcome community benefit.

Solar in Britain has a load factor of a little more than 10 per cent, which means that averaged over the year, including night-time, an installation will generate power equivalent to about a tenth of its capacity, about the same as in Germany. To maximise yield and revenues, you must get as close to this 10 per cent figure as possible.

This does not necessarily mean a south-facing installation. If most of the electricity consumed on-site is at lunchtime this can make sense, but it is often better to go for an east- or west-facing installation, which generate more electricity during the morning and afternoon. Worth noting that there is of course some difference between the north and south of the country, but solar panels are still cost-effective in the highlands of Scotland.

Solar installations on rooftops earn money from government feed-in-tariffs, which are still very cost-effective because of huge declines in technology and installation costs thanks to the boom in the industry. There are increasingly attractive financing schemes available, and operating and maintenance costs are very low.

For managers of public buildings, it is worth considering that the government is beefing up support for large roof-tops. For the first time they will distinguish between large roof-tops of between 50 kilowatts and 5 megawatts, and solar farms. Incentives for solar fall as they are used up, so this move will ring-fence the roof-top market for longer, giving finance directors more time to plan installations

The government is also trying to make it easier for landlords and tenants to have solar panels installed, and is consulting on changes to allow both tenants and landlords to physically transfer an installation, if they move. The aim is to lower investment risk and increase the flexibility of the scheme. This move is expected to open up a big new market for the solar industry. Central government is also taking a lead as the owner or tenant of its enormous public estate of government offices, Ministry of Defence buildings, and the vast Crown Estate, which includes prime retail and leisure property.

According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Conergy is a top-five solar developer in Britain, and we have invested considerably in our rooftops team. We bring huge experience from around the world to local installations, and are well-versed in the particular needs of the public sector. We urge building owners to act now. Recent research showed that large-scale, roof-top projects may be the first solar sector to be competitive without subsidies. Because these buildings are occupied in the daytime, when the sun is shining, they make a small profit through savings on utility bills, before accounting for the subsidies. It is very likely therefore there will be no subsidies in a few years.

Smart managers of public buildings are seizing the opportunity of current subsidies to create a long-term revenue stream and cut their energy bills. And they are backed by the government. Last April, the then energy and climate minister Greg Barker said the government aimed to install up to 1,000 MW of solar PV on public land and buildings. Substantial progress is expected in 2015. Together we can make that relatively modest ambition a reality.


This article appeared as the cover story for the February 2015 issue of Building & Facilities Management.


Ecolution powers Cambridge University sports centre as it turns to green energy

 The new sports centre at the University of Cambridge has had a unique Solar PV system installed by Ecolution, a leader in the design and installation of renewable systems. The company designed a bespoke PV system that curves on two axes, resulting in very complex shading patterns and light levels. The system was installed in just four weeks and is estimated to offset 37,409kg in CO2 emissions.

Paul Squire, Ecolution’s designer on the project, said: “This was an extremely complex design, and accuracy has been essential throughout – from the individually optimised modules to the building’s BMS connection. It has been a challenging installation as the roof has very sharp falls, plus the specialist zinc covering needs protecting during installation. The CO2 offset targets were challenging and much time was spent designing and demonstrating the system to achieve the BREEAM Very Good standard.”

This was a complete turn-key project in which Ecolution designed and installed a 78.75kWp system using 200 SOLON SOLraise modules embedded with Solar Edge optimisers. Chris Bratherton, Group Sales Manager, Ecolution said: “The installation on the sports centre’s curved Rheinzink standing seam roof was complex as the roof falls in multiple directions, which gave each module installed a unique orientation and pitch – with a conventional system this would affect performance and yield.”

Ecolution mounted the system on the centre’s Rheinzink roof using S-5!-E clamps and utilised SafeDC™ technology to provide system safety during installation, maintenance and emergencies. SafeDC™ is a web-based monitoring system used to detect faults on all areas of the installation and provides an automatic message for precise fault recognition. Ecolution used the technology to log the performance of each module so they can be remotely monitored.

The installation was able to achieve up to 25% higher output through module level Maximum Power Point (MPP) tracking. MPP tracking enables the system to maximise the energy from each module individually which ensures peak efficiency.

University of Cambridge vice chancellor Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz said that the University was committed to a low carbon future and that the wider £1 billion development in North West Cambridge would be one of the most sustainable developments of its scale in the UK. The PV system installed is estimated to generate 71.8MWh of electricity annually which would contribute to the University’s sustainability goals going forward.

Ecolution has been working with the building industry for over 25 years, providing renewable energy solutions for over a decade, with an expert team who have long-term experience in the design, installation and maintenance of integrated renewable technologies. Ecolution operates within the commercial and residential sectors, providing solar hot water systems, and solar photovoltaic systems.

T: 08452666558

E:  enquiries@ecolutionrenewables.com


Leading UK energy providers launch flexible renewable energy solutions for businesses

Two pioneering energy suppliers, AvantiGas and Duncan Renewables, have partnered to launch AvantiRenewables, a single-supplier of multi-fuel energy solutions aimed at giving developers greater green fuel choices.

The joint venture sees AvantiGas, national supplier of LPG, and Duncan Renewables, award-winning experts in the provision of renewable energy technologies, collaborate to help customers navigate towards greener fuel solutions.

AvantiRenewables provides customers with flexible and tailored lower carbon fuel choices and one of its first offerings uses biomass technology to deliver heating and hot water for businesses.

Neil Murphy, director of AvantiRenewables, commented: “AvantiRenewables   brings together two established energy companies to share years of tried and trusted expertise in energy provision.

“The joint venture allows customers to tap into an extensive bank of renewable energy knowledge while also benefitting from a bespoke, one-to-one service. Our aim is to help customers make informed decisions about greener fuel options specific to their energy objectives.

“Biomass is an evolving source of renewable energy and is still a relatively new concept for many businesses but AvantiRenewables is perfectly positioned to advise and supply the right solutions.”

How it works

As AvantiRenewables develops, biomass will form the first component of what is expected to be a suite of flexible green fuel solutions available to commercial customers. Biomass heating systems burn wood, predominantly in the form of pellets, to provide buildings with space heating, process heating and hot water requirements.

AvantiRenewables provides businesses with the opportunity to use biomass independently or as an integrated energy source in combination with LPG, depending on the customer needs profile.

Mark Duncan, co-director of AvantiRenewables said: “The great thing about AvantiRenewables is our collaborative strength in giving businesses long-term, flexible heating solutions tailored to their individual needs.

“We recognise that customers are increasingly aware of the need to move their energy requirements to a greener, cleaner fuel type for both financial and environmental reasons. For many customers the best solution lies in using a combination of technologies delivered by a one-stop shop buying policy.   AvantiRenewables objective is to be that single-supplier point of contact for customers.”

Tailored and funded schemes

Incorporating the Government’s Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), AvantiRenewables offers two installation options. Where capital is not available, the on-site model offers an RHI-supported ‘fund and facilitate’ scheme where the 20 years’ security of an owned and operated facility can give the customer peace of mind.

Where capital is available, the equipment sale model allows the customer to buy and install the equipment from AvantiRenewables, with optional operational support services provided as required.

Businesses looking to find out more about AvantiRenewables can visit www.avantirenewables.com or call 0808 191 0000.




Energy-saving programme receives Association for Public Service Excellence Award

“Best Renewable Energy &Energy Efficiency Initiative” Recognition For Peterborough City Council Highlights Proven Method for Reducing Energy Costs and Improving Facilities

 Honeywell (NYSE: HON) announced that its collaboration with Peterborough City Council to create a framework for cutting energy use while updating municipal facilities has won the 2014 award for Best Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Initiative from the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE).

The Council’s energy efficiency framework, part of the “Blue Sky Peterborough” programme, allows public authorities, social landlords and educational establishments to take advantage of energy performance contracts (EnPCs) — a fast and cost-effective procurement route for projects that help cut utility consumption and costs.

“We have successfully set up a fully functioning, simple to use, EU-compliant framework where, from inception, works can be on site and completed within a six-month period,” says John Harrison, executive director of resources at Peterborough City Council.

“This recognition from our peers reinforces our own belief that we have developed a workable, proven and successful method of reducing costs whilst enhancing the effectiveness of our property portfolio, thereby helping to protect our frontline services. Importantly, this facility is also available to other public sector organisations across the country, all of whom face similar challenges.”

Honeywell was appointed the framework delivery partner in June 2013 and, following the award of the first EnPC in early 2014 to retrofit eight properties, has already helped the Council to deliver over £1.1million in savings. These are being primarily achieved through an array of measures – including upgrades to or replacement of building control systems, an air handling unit, lighting systems and pool filtration systems – that trim energy use or reduce maintenance expenses.

“We’re delighted that Peterborough City Council’s vision in creating this framework has secured this award from APSE,” said James Napier, general manager – energy for Honeywell. “With more contract awards anticipated in the future, this framework will help the Council to further cut its energy bill and to reduce its carbon tax.”

With several new phases of work currently being finalised, the Council believes the framework will be a major contributor to its medium-term financial strategy and is targeting over £5 million of related savings for the financial year ending March 2019.

For more news and information on Honeywell, please visit www.honeywellnow.com


Energy efficiency through transparent system monitoring

The Belimo products “Energy Valve” and the room controller “CR24-B1” were the protagonists of a Macedonian pilot project in Skopje for the determination of the energy efficiency of buildings. The experimental set-up at the Institute of Forestry was able to demonstrate that, with the implementation of meaningful renovation measures, the consumption of primary energy could be reduced by 20 percent by the year 2020 in comparison with the expectations projected for 2007 — as outlined by the 2012/27/EU Directive. Thanks to the Belimo Energy Valve™ also the current energy consumption values and the optimisation potential of the system are known at all times.

Initial situation

In addition to forestry subjects, the Institute at the “St. Cyril and Methodius” University also performs research on aspects of environmental and energy efficiency. In the case of this pilot project, the intention was to investigate potential heating energy savings in the Institute›s own building. The basis for the experimental set-up was the international standard ISO 50001:2011, which describes systems and processes for improving energy efficiency.

Project requirements

Two points were defined as conditions:

  • Energy consumption can be analysed and regulated in accordance with work conditions (working hours, working days, room temperature etc.).
  • The energy consumption of the current month is known at all times, in contrast to the retrospective invoice data of the operator.
Belimo solution

These customer requirements correspond exactly to the features of the Belimo Energy ValveTM. It measures, regulates, balances and saves all measurement values. Because a web server is integrated in the valve actuator, the data can be viewed and analysed for a period of 13 months through any Internet connection with the Belimo Energy ValveTM Tool. The 2-way control valve that was previously used in the primary part of the heat supply facility was therefore replaced with the Belimo Energy ValveTM in the DN65 dimension. The valve is controlled with a room controller CR24-B1 (master controller with PI response) that is installed in a reference room. The nominal room temperature of 21 °C was lowered to 16 °C on weekdays after 3 pm and on weekends. From February 7th to the end of April 2013, the Energy Valve then used sensors to continuously measure, balance and control the flow and temperature values in the supply and return lines. Thanks to this transparent energy monitoring, it was possible to analyse where and in which amounts the energy in the heating system was being used. The optimisation potential was quickly determined: the available energy can be used according to actual requirements and energy consumption can be reduced significantly.

Customer benefit

The optimisation of the heating periods and temperatures with the aid of the Belimo Energy Valve™ led to energy savings of ≥ 30%, as could be seen on the invoices of the local heating supplier (Balkan Energy Group BEG).
The specifications of the EU Directive 2012/27/EU were fulfilled.
The customer has transparent energy consumption values at his disposal at all times and can project budgeting for the coming heating season.
Installation of the Belimo Energy Valve™ and the room controller CR24-B1 is possible with a manageable technical outlay.
After three months, the evaluation of the energy consumption values revealed considerably improved economic efficiency for the converted heating system.

Customer satisfaction

After the heating period was over, the experimental results achieved with the Energy Valve at the Institute of Forestry were analysed and presented to the university›s management. The expectations of the responsible officials were thereby greatly exceeded. Vice-Rector Prof. Dr. Nikola Vasilevski emphasised that the use of modern, energy-efficient technologies was of great value for his facility. It is for that reason that he would like not only to continue cooperating with BELIMO Automation AG in this area but also to extend it further. Based on this pilot project, the budgeting of a project is now being planned that involves the equipping of all 22 Institutes with Belimo Energy Valves™. www.belimo.com


Hospital cuts energy by £15,000 using variable-speed drives

A hospital is set to save around £15,000 a year on air handling costs following the installation of variable-speed drives (VSDs) by ABB authorised value provider Inverter Drive Systems (IDS).

The project involved fitting ABB drives to a number of air handling units (AHUs) in Bedford Hospital’s maternity and pathology departments, cutting air volumes to save on energy use.

Bedford Hospital NHS Trust is a 370-bed acute district general hospital serving patients in North and Mid Bedfordshire. IDS approached the hospital with a proposal to investigate its motor-driven fan applications with a view to using VSDs to cut energy use.

Kevin Stephenson, Estate Manager for Engineering, says: “We were attracted by IDS’ proposal, particularly by the low payback times of around a year they said we could achieve.”

IDS investigated the AHUs and together with the hospital, identified four AHUs as suitable candidates for retrofitting with VSDs. These were in the waiting rooms and other general areas of the neo-natal unit, maternity outpatients department, pathology ground, first and second floors. “We knew this would cause minimal disruption, as we could alter the air volumes and save energy without the need to meet the air change rates in more critical areas such as theatres,” says Stephenson.

Previously, the AHUs were used direct-on-line, with no form of control. IDS proposed retrofitting four AHUs, two in each department. The solution involved four 11 kW drives and one each of 7.5 kW, 15 kW and 3 kW. All were three-phase, ABB HVAC drives, ACH550, with IP54 enclosures.

Before installation, IDS had predicted a speed reduction of 15 percent but achieved 20 percent. This equated to a saving in energy costs of £15,000 a year, with payback in only 11 months. As well as the energy saving, the motors will run quieter, also suffering less wear and tear and therefore reducing the maintenance requirement.

Says Stephenson: “We were very pleased with the way the project went. IDS completed the installation on time and did what they said they would do. We have had no problems since the VSDs were installed in June 2013.”

ABB (www.abb.com) is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in around 100 countries and employs about 150,000 people.


Facilities Manager’s Guide to LED

 Lighting is the second biggest consumer of energy in any building. In a world concerned about energy efficiency, we are all undmha3er increasing pressure to choose products which are both energy efficient and cost effective. But with so much technology on the market, how do facilities managers decide on what is the right solution for their business? MD of MHA Lighting, Tom Harrison, guides managers through the latest LED lighting options available and discusses the increasing popularity of LEDs – their benefits and also their challenges.

THE Carbon Trust reports that energy efficient lighting such as LED can save UK businesses £700m a year and cut more than 10 million tonnes of carbon emissions. Other research puts the savings closer to £1.4 billion.

There is no doubt that the switch to energy efficient lighting such as LEDs can really pay off. But when as a facilities manager do you jump on the LED bandwagon when the lighting market is moving so fast?

And when you do eventually make the switch how do you avoid the pitfalls that have unfortunately been associated with the LED lighting market?

The benefits of LEDs are now well documented.

  • Efficiency: Energy Savings of up to 80% with intelligent controls
  • Lifetime:  A minimum useful Lifetime of 66,000 hours
  • Zero Maintenance: Reducing routine maintenance costs and disruption
  • Cool Light: Radiates very little heat
  • Shock Resistance: Robust design making it difficult to damage
  • Toxicity: Contains no mercury, eliminating disposal costs (RoHS complaint)

But then so are the challenges.

Professional LED manufacturers have been working hard to ensure their products are able to achieve the photometric performance of Fluorescents and Halogens, and to develop luminaires that are as pleasant to look at as Fluorescent. They have also been working hard to publicise how far the industry has come and put distance between themselves and the “sell it cheap / pile it high” overseas manufacturers who seem to care little for the quality or longevity of their fittings.

LED lighting solutions have now been developed that have long term reliability built in to their design to overcome previous issues of LED lifetime. For example MHA Lighting’s LED light fittings provide 66,000 hours of useful lifetime which equates to seven and a half years at 24 hours a day seven days a week usage. With a driver upgrade at 66,000 hours, MHA’s luminaires will actually provide a minimum 109,000 hour lifetime.

But for all facilities managers the first consideration before choosing new lighting has to be the required quality of the lighting solution to be implemented – key considerations being light levels, colour rendering and uniformity.

For example, the traditional high pressure Sodiums/Halides can no longer compete with any of the above lighting requirements against LED solutions which provide 65 CRI and 5500 Kelvin.

The same rules would apply to internal applications too, as there is no need to compromise on light quality to take advantage of energy efficient lighting.

The next consideration would typically be whether to go the whole hog to LED or the smaller perceived safer switch to T5 technology which involves a much lower investment – but a fraction of the energy saving.

A key factor in choosing between these two will be the operating hours involved in the application.

LEDs involve a greater upfront expenditure and whilst offering much more significant savings this only translates into the better business case if the lights are being burnt for at least 11 hours a day such that return on investment can be achieved in a justifiable timeframe.

If selecting LED technology care also needs to be taken to ensure high reliability products are installed.

The LED lighting industry is young and immature and there are horror stories aplenty regarding quality failures.

For my own part I have been shocked to have been shown LED light fittings powered by laptop power supplies – and made a mental note to return to the premises in six months to offer a replacement.

In fact all the benefits of LED technology are completely dependent upon longevity in the fitting.  And longevity in a LED light engine is completely dependent upon three crucial factors:

  • The LED itself
  • Thermal management of the junction temperature
  • The driver

Facilities Managers are totally entitled to ask the LED manufacturers/suppliers to provide thorough documented evidence and certification for each of those three elements.

Responsible LED lighting suppliers will have independent test data for each of those factors as well as photometric data, CE marking and IP rating certification, TM 21 reports and LM 80 reliability data. They will also be happy to share case studies with you and should provide reference sites for you to visit.

LEDs can also be highly directional which is why the majority of LED fittings tend to be downlights, spotlights or very high bay.

But today there are certain LED lights which will replace standard traditional lamps and provide equivalent uniformity.  For example MHA Lighting’s technology is waveguide technology which we utilise to create the same uniformity of light distribution as traditional lamps do.

Facilities Managers need to ask for the photometric data as evidence of the light distribution of any fitting that they may be considering to install.  Care should also be taken to ensure that for internal applications LEDs with 80 CRI – or external application 65CRI – should be specified.

Some LED manufacturers provide much cooler temperatures as these give the appearance of the light actually being brighter than it truly is.  In our experience cooler temperatures of around 4000 Kelvin are best suited to most internal applications which may involve precision working and external temperatures of 5500 kelvin and a 65CRI will deliver the ideal light colour.

Also with respect to colour creation, LED lights can be quite inconsistent with a tolerance range of up to 500 kelvin so Facilities Managers should take care to specify a tolerance of say + /- 100 Kelvin and insist that the manufacturer demonstrates how this will be achieved.

Finally the manufacturers should be questioned as to how the internal LEDs are protected so that things like surges in power supply will not result in catastrophic failure of the light engine.

Personally as a manufacturer of lighting products that use LEDs as the light source I hope Facilities Managers are not deterred from making the switch to LED. The technology is here and the ever growing number of professional LED lighting manufacturers and suppliers are constantly innovating to create ever-improving solutions.

MHA Lighting’s strapline – The future of lighting is here – is intentional. The technology really is here right now and the take up will be no less than phenomenal.

For example, presently only around 10-15% of the general lighting market is occupied by LED. This is set to increase to 64% by 2020, resulting in a market value of $75.6billion.

Meanwhile MHA Lighting continues to work with some of the UK’s biggest and best known Blue Chip organisations, Local Authorities and NHS Trusts. To date they have been delighted with major energy savings of between 70-80% and equivalent Co2 reductions. They have been further impressed by light quality and other associated benefits of LED lighting ranging from zero maintenance to the long life and cleanliness of fittings.

MHA Lighting:

MHA Lighting is an award-winning lighting manufacturer based in Greater Manchester that has an extensive range of LED solutions for most internal and external applications.

The team at MHA believe that everyone should have the best lit environment achievable – whether that is at work, in public places or on the streets. We don’t sell lights – what we do is much more important than that. We help every one of our clients achieve the best lit environment possible and typically save them 80% on their energy bills along the way.

We have an award-winning technical team who are passionate about creating meaningful innovations that provide the RIGHT lighting solution for each individual’s requirements first time.

We are the only lighting manufacturer to shine light sideways into encapsulation avoiding direct contact with the eye and providing a safe, efficient light output. We also use acrylic rods to amplify and control the light output, reducing the number of LEDs required. This means we can use high power LEDs, draw less current and have no need to diffuse the output.

Case Studies of our work include: The Trafford Centre, GlaxoSmithKline, Scott Safety, the NHS, Birmingham NEC, Greater Manchester Police, Manchester Airport Group, Reckitt Benckiser and Chevron-Texaco.

For more information:

Visit: www.mhalighting.co.uk

Call:  01942 887400

Email: sales@mhalighting.com







Kingspan and ISD Solutions deliver state-of-the-art warehouse and distribution centre

ISD1Aldi’s new super-efficient cold store warehouse and distribution centre at Goldthorpe, near Barnsley, features a unique single envelope design by ISD Solutions and incorporates high performance insulated panels and a solar PV system from Kingspan.

Due to open in 2015, the multi-million pound development, including warehouse, chilled food storage areas and office space, totalling 52,000 m2, will serve Aldi’s growing portfolio of stores across South and West Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and Derbyshire, employing some 400 new staff.

With overall project management lead by DSP Construction and ISD2following a strict tendering process, ISD Solutions was selected providing its expertise in single envelope warehouse design and build, especially thermally efficient cold store construction, while Kingspan products have been specified due to their high performance, durability and energy efficiency.

Expected to operate 24/7, 365 days a year, the specification for the project provides a high performance, environmentally friendly solution, with extremely low running costs. The single envelope design was chosen as it produces a structure that is faster and more cost effective to build, with significantly improved thermal properties.

The single envelope construction requires between 33-50% less supporting steelwork than conventional structures, while the airtightness of the envelope ensures that the interior environment, both in the ambient and chilled areas of the warehouse, requires less energy to maintain and control.

20,000 m2 of Kingspan’s controlled environment insulated wall panels are installed on the project, providing excellent levels of technical performance to ensure controlled temperature levels within the cold store. The panels feature an innovative secret-fix system that not only delivers superior airtightness, but also results in a fixing-free, clean surface to the panel façade. Kingspan Topdeck insulated panels have been chosen for the ambient roof as their pre-adhered membrane saves on installation time.

To ensure fire safety, ISD installed steel-faced composite panels, with non-combustible mineral fibre cores, to form a wall between the ambient warehouse and chill warehouse as they ensure excellent fire resistance from 60 to 240 minutes, if needed.

Both the ambient and the chilled areas of the warehouse feature Kingspan Roof Mounted PV System, designed, supplied and installed by Kingspan Energy. The 1.5 MWp solar PV system covers a total area of 15,000 m2 and consists of 1,500 modules, 250 Wp each.  It will provide Aldi with 1.2 MW of electricity per annum, further improving the energy performance of the building and reducing its lifetime running costs.

Kingspan Energy’s Commercial Manager, Aisling McArdle comments: “The new Aldi distribution centre at Goldthorpe is one of the biggest rooftop solar PV installations we have undertaken to date, and we are pleased to have completed it in a relatively short time frame of less than three months. Our PV system will significantly reduce Aldi’s electricity costs on this site, ultimately contributing to their continued growth and penetration into the UK market”.

ISD Solutions managing director Tony Wall says: “We have been working with Aldi across a number of in-store frozen and chilled food storage solutions and this is our first stand alone warehouse project for the store group. The range of composite panel technology incorporated in this project, together with the solar PV system, makes this a truly state-of-art warehouse structure. We have also been able to incorporate the warehouse energy centre, normally requiring a separate structure, into the main building, resulting in a simpler, more cost effective solution.”





Transforming energy supply – Powerstar now offers enhanced savings

powerstar2Buildings with their own transformers can now achieve greater energy savings than ever before thanks to the latest technology from market leading voltage optimisation manufacturer EMSc (UK) Ltd, with the revolutionary Powerstar – HV MAX. Dr Alex Mardapittas, managing director, explains …

 Voltage optimisation is a well established and highly effective energy-saving technology that should form part of every organisation’s energy reduction strategy. A system, fitted in series with the mains electricity supply, ensures that a site only receives and pays for the voltage that it needs and uses – generally around the 220V, which is optimum for EU electrical equipment, instead of the average 242V supplied by the National Grid.

As the leading innovator in the field and the only voltage optimisation manufacturer with a patent on its design, British company Powerstar has been delivering savings to the public and private sectors for over 13 years. Its market leading and unique system not only provides substantial financial savings averaging 12% – 15% with a typical payback of two to three years – it also reduces carbon emissions, extends the life of electrical equipment which can be damaged by peaks and troughs in power supply and tackles poor power quality issues.

Expertise and Experience

Both the private and public sector, including Government, local authorities, hospitals, schools and colleges throughout the UK have benefited from guaranteed savings with the installation of Powerstar systems. All of which have demonstrated a 100% safety, security and reliability track record.London City Hall, is just one of many flagship buildings to reap the benefits of a Powerstar voltage optimisation unit which is providing the Greater London Authority with energy savings of 13.6%.

Sheffield Hallam University has experienced an even greater reduction in energy spend –  approximately 16% – in its student union since installing a Powerstar system. The unit has also removed high levels of harmonics (electrical noise) from the supply and there has been a welcomed 75% reduction in the failure of light tubes. The reduction in maintenance costs plus energy savings have provided the University with a payback of just over one year.

Hospitals are well-placed to benefit from the advantages offered by Powerstar voltage optimisation systems as several NHS Trusts, including Sheffield Teaching Hospitals and West Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust have discovered.

Critical hospital equipment and high night loads mean that it is absolutely essential that voltage is supplied at a constant level, regardless of how unstable the incoming voltage.  Powerstar MAX has been designed for exactly this situation. It is an electronic-dynamic system which uses intelligent electronic controls to automatically ensure consistency of supply. Installation is simple, quick and non-disruptive.


MAX savings

The latest innovation in the Powerstar range is Powerstar HV MAX, which combines the electro-dynamic voltage optimisation technology of Powerstar MAX with a super-efficient transformer. This is the world’s first high voltage electronic variable solution, developed after years of market research.

Designed for businesses that operate their own transformers, Powerstar HV MAX was the first fully electronically variable High Voltage (HV) transformer in the world, The Powerstar HV MAX system takes 11,000V/22,000V/33,000V input and provides a fully electronically regulated 380 (or user-defined) voltage. The user can also alter the defined voltage locally through HMI on site or remotely via the internet, as all the units are IP addressable, through BMS (ModBus) or through GPRS (remote access).

Powerstar HV MAX allows sites with their own transformers to take voltage optimisation one step further by optimising a building’s voltage supply on the high voltage side before it even enters a building.

Depending on the age and type of the HV transformer that is already installed on site, a Powerstar HV MAX system, will provide between 3%-10% savings, just from replacement of the HV distribution transformer, with the more efficient super low loss amorphous core transformer used with the HV MAX. Coupled with the integrated voltage optimisation technology, which will offer a further 12%-15% savings, sites can expect to achieve average savings of 17% from installation of a Powerstar HV MAX.

The super low-loss transformer has an amorphous core, which delivers savings of up to 75% when compared with conventional transformers as they contain a core of cold rolled grain oriented steel. Integrated voltage optimisation technology provides a combined solution of replacing an inefficient transformer and optimising site voltage, resulting in substantial energy savings that average 17%.

Powerstar HV MAX can replace a building’s existing transformer or be installed in new building developments and incorporates a monitoring facility, enabling organisations to identify where further energy savings can be made. It can be installed in four to six hours without touching the on-site supply and adapted for inside or outside installations. Powerstar has no moving parts so maintenance is minimal and all systems come with a 15-year warranty.


Guaranteed savings

All sites have different voltage needs and this is why Powerstar carries out a free and comprehensive on-site assessment before recommending the most appropriate system and agreeing a guaranteed level of savings.

Voltage optimisation systems are a ‘fit and forget’ technology which provide savings at source and can be used in conjunction with all other energy-saving measures such as lighting controls and photovoltaic panels. With the arrival of HV MAX offering more options than ever, doesn’t it make sense to find out how much you could be saving?

Powerstar HV MAX is part of the Powerstar range, which has been manufactured by EMSc (UK) Ltd, entirely in the UK for over 13 years. The company also conducts all its research, development and sourcing in the UK and has been accredited with the prestigious Made in Sheffield accolade. The Yorkshire-based company has successfully expanded into international markets with subsidiaries in Australia and Cyprus. It has distributors in a number of countries, including Germany, Austria, Spain, UAE and South Africa.


For more information:

Call: 01142 576200

Visit: www.powerstar.com

Email: info@powerstar.co.uk


Peterborough City Council places first order with Honeywell to cut energy costs

Energy Efficiency Upgrades To Generate Guaranteed Savings Of £163,000 Annually For 15 Years

Honeywell (NYSE: HON) has announced that it has received an energy performance contract order from Peterborough City Council to perform energy efficiency upgrades to eight facilities owned by the Council, including the town hall, swimming pools, a leisure centre, a library and a car park.

Honeywell has proposed a range of energy conservation measures for the facilities that are expected to generate annual energy savings of £163,000 at current usage rates over the 15-year period. The energy savings are guaranteed by Honeywell, and the upgrades to the facilities are expected to be completed in about six months.

Measures include upgrades to or replacement of building control systems, an air handling unit, lighting systems and pool filtration systems. A behaviour management programme will be supported by the installation of information dashboards within a number of the facilities. The Council selected the measures to be implemented following a comprehensive engineering analysis of the current energy performance at each facility by Honeywell.

“We’ll be using our experience, expertise and resources to drive energy reductions and to ensure ongoing demand is both minimised and optimised,” said James Napier, general manager-energy for Honeywell. “With more contract awards anticipated in the future, this framework will help the Council to cut its energy bill and to reduce its carbon tax. The same framework is also available to other organisations and local authorities, meaning that they too could enjoy similar benefits from a proven and effective programme”

“Implementing appropriate energy efficiency programmes using energy performance contracts enables us to benefit immediately from the improvements while using future, guaranteed operational savings to reduce capital budget requirements for maintenance and refurbishment,” said John Harrison, Executive Director, Resources at Peterborough City Council. “We’re delighted that we’re seeing a real return from this exciting initiative.”

The performance contract order follows Honeywell Building Solutions’ appointment as Peterborough City Council’s framework delivery partner in 2013.

Honeywell (www.honeywell.com) is a Fortune 100 diversified technology and manufacturing leader, serving customers worldwide with aerospace products and services; control technologies for buildings, homes and industry; turbochargers; and performance materials. Based in Morris Township, N.J., Honeywell’s shares are traded on the New York, London, and Chicago Stock Exchanges. For more news and information on Honeywell, please visit www.honeywellnow.com