As air-conditioning equipment ages, its ability to maintain adequate space temperatures and humidity levels declines. Often, the culprit is reduced coil heat-transfer effectiveness resulting from the buildup of contaminants on coil surfaces. As Forrest Fencl of UV Resources says in this July 2013 Managing Your Facilities column, performance losses from contaminant buildup have led many building operators to retrofit their air-conditioning systems with ultraviolet-C (UV-C) light systems.
Health-care patient-room design is dictated by rigid environmental and safety requirements, which severely limit the types of systems deemed suitable for HVAC. These requirements are evaluated continually, which, on occasion, opens the door to more progressive and lower-energy technologies. Such a time was 2011, when ASHRAE revised ANSI/ASHRAE/ASHE Standard 170-2008, Ventilation of Health Care Facilities, allowing the use of recirculating-type heating and cooling units within non-invasive areas of hospitals, Craig R. Buck, PE, LEED AP, HFDP, of RMF Engineering Inc. says in this November 2013 article.
Sometimes it is best to keep it simple, step back, and remember the basics that are the foundation of any successful building-control project, J. Christopher Larry, PE, CXA, CEM, CEP, CIPE, LEED AP, of exp says in this February 2013 article.
Many variable-air-volume systems are designed with incompatible and/or incomplete control strategies that undermine the performance of outdoor-air economizers. In this March 2013 article, Craig F. Hofferber, CxA, CSI, discusses how, through proper application of modern tools, a much higher level of success can be achieved.
In this blog, published in the November 2013 edition of HPAC Engineering's monthly Engineering Green Buildings electronic newsletter (to subscribe, click here), Executive Editor Scott Arnold writes about researchers in the United Kingdom who found a way to turn "the ultimate waste product" into fuel.
HVAC and hydronic systems will not work optimally unless the correct valves are used. In this April 2013 article, the Honeywell Global Field Devices Business presents application tips to ensure correct valve selection.
With the inception of the LEED green-building rating program and stricter energy and ventilation requirements, the geothermal industry has evolved. In this February 2013 article, Christopher Qualls, PE, CEM, of Smith Seckman Reid Inc. provides an overview of the wide array of geothermal options available to design engineers and commercial-building owners seeking to sharply reduce operating costs.
Over the last 10 years, the mechanical-engineering and construction industry has rapidly adopted building information modeling (BIM). As Sam Robins of Autodesk Inc. explains in this May 2013 article, where BIM goes from here will be determined by three key technological movements that are redefining the way mechanical engineers and contractors work: digital infrastructure, big data, and emerging markets.
The Adam Joseph Lewis Center for Environmental Studies on the campus of Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio, is one of the nation’s most widely publicized green buildings. It was conceived to be a zero-energy building. However, as John H. Scofield, a professor at Oberlin College, shows in this January 2013 article, from 2000 through 2011, there was not one year the building’s photovoltaic arrays produced as much energy as the building consumed.
Many formulas for calculating evaporation from occupied swimming pools have been published. In 2003, Mirza M. Shah, PhD, PE, FASHRAE, FASME, introduced two formulas, one empirical and one theoretical. While those formulas showed reasonable agreement with data from several sources, it was felt greater accuracy was needed. Shah’s efforts to meet that need resulted in a new formula showing good agreement with all available test data. This April 2013 article presents the new formula, as well as lookup tables to simplify its use.
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