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Dennis Flower, Editor

Study hails 22% energy savings with chilled beam technology

New research from the Chilled Beams and Ceilings Association comparing the performance of HVAC systems has revealed potential for energy savings of 17 to 22 per cent with chilled beam technology.

Critical considerations for energy savings in commercial buildings have been revealed in the new EDSL Tas Energy Study conducted in collaboration with the CBCA, released today.

The results were important for the industry as a whole, the CBCA said, as the Annual Plant Energy Cost Comparison revealed in the study showed that there are potential energy and cost savings that can be made using products that are already available on the market.

These savings were shown to amount annually to approximately 17 per cent for a passive chilled beam system and approximately 22 per cent for the active chilled beam system, over the VAV fancoil system modelled.

The EDSL Tas Energy Study simulated the dynamic thermal performance of four differently-sized office buildings, and compared the energy consumption, CO2 emissions and the running costs of different HVAC systems within these office buildings.

The cooling systems analysed were VAV Fan Coil with EC Motors, Passive Chilled Beams and Active Chilled beams. The study has shown that for both the Passive and Active beams energy consumption is lower than that of the VAV Fan Coil system, for all the buildings modelled.

CBCA chairman Andrew Jackson said: “The findings of this research come at a time when energy demand and supply is top of the news agenda, and as the impact of the UK’s energy capacity gap is being examined both by policymakers and commercial and public property owners.

“As an industry it’s important we share knowledge to help get buildings to perform more efficiently, and chilled beam technology offers a solution for offices and other property – its technology that is available today and proven to enable energy savings.”

The findings of the study were made available today to industry stakeholders at an event held at the Building Centre in London.

The event included presentations with an overview of the study by EDSL managing director Alan Jones, summary findings by the CBCA’s Andrew Gaskell and commercial conclusions by CBCA member Michael Ainley.

Mr Ainley said: “The evidence regarding how much more energy-efficient chilled beams are to other forms of air conditioning is long overdue. If the UK is to achieve a carbon neutral state by 2019 then the information in this independent study is a powerful tool for specifiers.”

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