The physical disruption to the existing building fabric, coupled with the need for new hardware and ancillary equipment – not to mention time, crane-lift and labour costs – can be prohibitive.
However, system designers face this scenario as more relatively newly built; speculative commercial buildings come into first-time use. Unfortunately, today open plan office designs are making way for individual office layouts.
Where you previously had, say, five floors of open-plan office space with the appropriate 2-pipe air conditioning services, building owners redesign the interiors to incorporate multiple smaller offices on each floor. Hence, the requirement for individually controlled, simultaneous heating and cooling solutions.
Existing 2-pipe VRF
The existing system comprised a 2-pipe Hitachi VRF set-free system with five ducted units operating off one outside unit on each floor. While the new interior office configuration called for a 3-pipe solution, conversion was no problem because Hitachi is, apparently, the only manufacturer whose outdoor units can support both 2-pipe and 3-pipe systems.
Hence, there was no need for new outdoor units, just the simple addition of Hitachi changeover branch boxes.
Enough capacity for more
“Another requirement was for LEED accreditation and this too was achievable with the Hitachi installation”, says Paul Byrne, Technical Sales Manager, Tech Refrigeration & Air Conditioning.
“Using Hitachi’s CS Net Web controller and the Hitachi Hi-ToolKit software programme, we were able to devise the most efficient and cost-effective solution.”
Other benefits of CS Net Web include:
- Centralised independent control of up to 640 indoor units (four connected devices);
- Remote control via Web/Lan network;
- Timer: unlimited calendar configuration;
- Outdoor control;
- Heating fan stop during thermo off (heat draft);
- Integrated email alert;
- Calculation of energy consumption;
- Multiple access by password;
- Total control over system functionalities.
“Given the many new challenges retrofit poses, especially in relation to previously unoccupied but newly-built and fully fitted out commercial premises” says Fergus Daly, Area Sales Manager, Hitachi.
“Clients, consultants and installers can trust in Hitachi to deliver an energy efficient, cost effective solution.”