Malcolm Anson, President of the Building Controls Industry Association (BCIA), explains why investment in training is essential if we are to drive the HVAC and building controls industry forward.
The ongoing skills shortage is a well-known topic of conversation in our sector, as well as nationwide. To address this issue, a robust plan of action is essential with training high on the agenda.
Research conducted by Engineering UK found an additional 1.8 million engineers and technically qualified people are needed by 2025. The study also discovered that people are put off by a career in the industry due to not understanding the various job roles or the importance of the sector.
Toshiba is now one of the largest providers of air conditioning training in the country, with almost 5,000 people attending its courses over the past three years. ACR Journal reports on the company’s practical approach and the latest initiatives in development.
“The major air conditioning manufacturers have a responsibility to take a lead on training. It is in everyone’s interests to improve skills and the level of professionalism and competence across the industry.”
So says David Dunn, Director and General Manager of Toshiba Air Conditioning and CIAT Ozonair, who has made training one of the key strategic priorities for the company. It is not just lip service; the manufacturer has invested significant sums in training infrastructure and initiatives, and this continues with a number of fresh initiatives that put training and skills at the centre of its approach to the market.
The UK is experiencing a substantial shortage of engineers, with 257,000 new vacancies expected in six years. Children are the future, yet 72% of people believe that not enough is being done to encourage kids to study STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects.
To help spark a change, Neutronic Technologies, the UK electric motors, pumps and motor gearboxes supplier has produced a unique report examining what exactly is holding the industry back.
Research conducted by industrial components and engineering services Neutronic Technologies has revealed that more than one in seven people believe that not enough is currently being done to encourage children to study STEM subjects.
With the UK facing such a drastic shortage of talent, and the urgent problems facing the modern world, the need for industry-wide change has never been more apparent.
Encouraging students to choose cooling as a career often appears to be an impossible challenge but take the time to meet the students, and you soon find out why.
As an industry, we must recognise that in schools, no-one has heard of the cooling industry despite it being so vast and so essential to modern life. We all have a duty to ensure that the engineers of tomorrow are inspired to join us, and that means reaching out to them!
Our most valuable asset, our people, often receive the least proactive (planned, preventative) attention!
I say proactive on purpose, because most RACHP companies have lots of processes and procedures to manage reactive (breakdown) situations when something goes wrong with our people.
A lack of maintenance, whether it is people or equipment will inevitably lead to more breakdowns. It delays the inevitable.
By Neil Wooldridge, Technical Manager, Toshiba Air Conditioning
The term pump-down is used to refer to a number of different procedures involving the transfer of refrigerant within an air conditioning system.
It is commonly used to describe a process that involves drawing as much of a system’s refrigerant as possible into an outdoor unit, to enable work to be carried out on the refrigerant circuit external to the outdoor unit (indoor units, FS-Boxes and pipework).
Steve Dixey, Mechanical Trainer with HETA looks at training engineers for the future.
Do we train refrigeration engineers or do we train engineers who can be adaptable? Do you want a very specific set of knowledge and practical skills? Or, do you want adaptability?
Who do we train and how?
The dreaded question we get when one applies for a job;
“Have you experience of Refrigeration Machine XYZ with multiple sprangle valves and plenty of what-nots”?
LG Electronics opened their new training academy in Weybridge in October.
The ACR Journal team went to visit the new venue in Brooklands, Surrey and interviewed their Technical Manager, Mark Richardson about their courses.
The impressive new offices, right next to the historic motor racing circuit near Weybridge in Surrey, house an equally impressive new training academy that was opened on the day by LG’s UK President Mr Ki Kwon.
The centre includes areas for trainees to get ‘hands on’ with all the LG products – air conditioning, heating and the user interfaces that set LG equipment apart from its competitors.
Daikin explores the implications of R32 refrigerant in this CPD article - take the questionnaire below in the form to gain CPD points.
In 2015, European phase-down of HFCs has begun with the introduction of the new F-gas regulation, which will see their use reduced to 21% of average levels between 2009 and 2011 by 2030.
For the HVAC-R industry, the next 15 years will see major changes, with the new legislation restricting and banning the use of refrigerant gases in certain applications.
Daikin’s preferred alternative to R410A for smaller direct expansion (DX) systems is R32 and the company is launching the first Split systems with a cooling capacity under 7kW using R32 in March 2015.