January 2020 Newsletter
‘Sheltered housing complex puts trust in Scolmore and ESP, Plans go in for new £337m Museum of London site, 2019 saw the rise of wind and the collapse of coal, Univolt goes large with Wembley specification, Manchester Met Uni submits £65m science building plan’.
Schneider Products Extended To Support 18th Edition
Schneider Electric has extended its product range to help contractors comply with the 18th Edition of the IET Wiring Regulations.
The 18th Edition, which came into force in January 2019, sets out to increase the safety of electrical installations. To support electrical contractors with the increasing requirements, Schneider Electric has invested in a portfolio of connected products which enable electrical faults to be identified prior to them becoming a costly and potentially dangerous scenario.
Harnessing the power of connectivity, Schneider Electric’s Acti9 Isobar P distribution boards cut installation time by around 50 per cent and leverage connected technologies to help users monitor system health and energy usage.
The range has been extended with the Acti9 iCT 3Pole & Neutral Contactor for lighting applications and the Acti9 ilD Type B RCCB. The Acti9 Type B RCCB offers a new and improved design, with the added safety features of Visi-safe and Visi-trip, now vital with the recent updated guidance around RCD types.
The Acti9 iCT 3P+N contactor has also been launched to support the increasing demand for LED lighting, as it is designed to cope with the large in rush of energy created by increasing LED lighting loads. The contactor operates by controlling a group of circuits and can be integrated in to the powertag system.
These new introductions are fully compatible with the Acti9 Isobar P range and Powertag wireless energy monitoring devices, to ensure a connected solution for the electrical contractor and end user.
“The 18th Edition presents both challenges and opportunities for installers,” says Deepak Sharad, Marketing and Offer Development Manager Home and Distribution at Schneider Electric. ‘While the focus of the 18th Edition is to increase safety, installers equipped with connected solutions can not only become safer but also more energy and time efficient. We’re confident our new products will support our customers and partners with full compliance, increased productivity and smarter energy consumption.
Source: Electrical Contracting News
Changes to the approved installation method of RPZ valves announced
The Water Regulations Advisory Scheme (WRAS) has confirmed changes to the Approved Installation Method (AIM) for Type BA devices (RPZ valves), Issue 2 of AIM 08-01.
The changes come after a comprehensive review by the water industry, which has concluded in the new AIM being published, and marks the start of a 12-month transition period.
This period will allow training providers to understand and adopt the changes, while allowing commissioners and testers time to access training before Issue 1 is withdrawn on 7 January 2021.
On behalf of the water industry, WRAS will be providing free training during the transition period to help currently approved RPZ testers become familiar with the changes, to ensure they can continue to be recognised by water companies after 7th January 2021.
RPZ valves play an important role in protecting people from the risk of the contamination from plumbing systems. The AIM has been updated to make ensure that commissioning and testing is carried out consistently to a suitable standard. It details the standards for commissioning and compliance testing RPZ valves, as well as improving the way equipment is calibrated and how tests are reported.
Water companies are also seeking to improve the recognition of RPZ testers by offering dedicated registration as part of limited scope sector within official Approved Contractor Schemes.
The new AIM will mean some changes for RPZ installers, testers, property owners, and facility managers all are advised to read the new AIM and contact their water companies if they have any specific queries.
Julie Spinks, Managing Director of WRAS, said: “The water industry is committed to continuous improvement across every part of the industry. The new AIM has consolidated and formalised good practices to improve standards around RPZ valve commissioning, testing and reporting.
“We will be writing to all registered RPZ testers and inviting them to carry out the necessary training, but we’d encourage them to make sure they keep their contact details up to date.”
Further information about the new AIM can be found on the WRAS website here.
Source: HVP Magazine
Sheltered housing complex puts trust in Scolmore and ESP
Products from Scolmore and ESP were selected for a recent refurbishment and upgrade of a 32-bedroom sheltered housing complex in Edinburgh, included the installation of new lighting and emergency exit signs to cover the communal areas and stairways of all six floors of the building.
Scolmore’s Inceptor EVO bulkhead provided the lighting solution and ESP’s Duceri 2W LED maintained exit signs were installed to provide safe lighting of all exits.
Lee Rodgers is the property officer with Trust Housing Association which is responsible for the sheltered housing complex, and was overseeing the refurbishment work. “As with all refurbishment projects of this nature we need to ensure we get the best value products that are easy to install, are cost-effective and cause minimal disruption to our tenants’ day to day lives,” he says. “We had excellent support from Scolmore and ESP in selecting the right products for our requirements and they proved very quick and easy to install with very little work needed to restore the décor.”
It was important to Trust that their chosen manufacturer worked closely and sympathetically with them to minimise disruption and provide support with the design. Scolmore also attended contractor meetings throughout the duration of the scheme to ensure that the supply chain remained intact and seamless, to ensure a smooth delivery of the project within the tight timescales required.
A total of 20 Duceri 2W LED Emergency Exit Signs were installed, chosen for their high performance, independent testing and ease of installation. The fitting features an SMD 3528 LED lamp, with 5500K colour temperature and offers a viewing distance of 24m. They offer three hours emergency duration and have been tested to meet BS EN 60598-2-22 standards.
Approximately 120 EVO Bulkhead products were fitted. These were the 17W LED Utility Bulkheads with three-hour emergency and microwave sensor option. As well as integrating the control gear and the light source within the diffuser, the bulkhead has the added benefit of a Flow plug which allows for fast and simple connection and disconnection for testing and maintenance of the luminaire.
This retrofit lighting installation project is the first of what forms part of a wider refurbishment programme which is being rolled out across all of the Trust’s housing stock.
Source: Electrical Contracting News
HHIC launches TRV guide for consumers
To help consumers understand the benefits of installing TRVs and the technology they use to achieve energy efficiency, the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council (HHIC) has created a ‘Consumer Guide to Thermostatic Radiator Valves’.
HHIC director Stewart Clements HHIC said: “TRVs are a simple and affordable way of controlling the heat output of a radiator and the temperature of a room. Effectively selected and installed, TRVs are proven to provide temperature control in individual rooms, thus reducing heating costs and enhancing comfort for consumers. They are also easy to fit to new or retrofit installations.
“HHIC and its members have added this guide to our suite of information, to help consumers understand the benefits of this simple but effective technology.”
Source: HPM Magazine
Plans go in for new £337m Museum of London site
The Museum of London has submitted a planning application to the City of London Corporation for its new home in West Smithfield.
The cost of transforming the market buildings into a museum has risen to £337m from the original budget of £250m.
Plans from the the architectural team of Stanton Williams and Asif Khan with Julian Harrap Architects look to preserve much of the historic fabric of the old market buildings.
The submission of a planning application is the latest milestone for the project, which was formally announced in 2015.
The City of London Corporation will now assess the application before taking a decision on whether to approve the plans later this year.
Sharon Ament, Director of the Museum of London, said: “This is an important milestone for the project, as we formally set out our plans to transform the West Smithfield site and in doing so transform the idea of what a museum can be.
“It has been four years of hard work by a dedicated and talented project team in order to get here and, while we still have a while to go and money to raise before we open the doors to the new Museum, this is nevertheless a significant step forward to turning our vision into reality.”
Paul Williams, Principal Director at Stanton Williams, said: “The opportunity to help reinvent, reimagine and transform a group of existing Market Buildings into a 21st century museum is an extraordinary opportunity – especially in an area of London so rich in history.
“Smithfield is a perfect location for the Museum of London, the place itself has so many stories to be told, and traces of the past to engage with.”
The City of London Corporation is putting forward £197m of the £337m needed to deliver the scheme alongside £70m from the Mayor of London.
The Museum of London has continued in its fundraising efforts, securing a total of £28m so far, leaving a further £42m to raise before the project is delivered.
Source: Construction Enquirer
World’s first recycled bricks go into production in Scotland
Scientists at Heriot Watt University in Scotland have developed the world’s first building brick that’s made from 90% recycled construction and demolition waste.
The K-Briq produces slashed the CO2 emissions of a traditional fired brick, using less than a tenth of the energy in its manufacture and can be made in any colour.
After testing, the K-Briq is going into commercial production in Scotland after a deal with Hamilton Waste & Recycling to produce the K-Briq at its recycling site.
The product, which is stronger and lighter than traditional kiln-fired bricks, is being produced by the University’s cleantech spin-out company Kenoteq.
It is produced from concrete, brick and plasterboard waste combined with a secret binder and compressed to size without firing.
Professor Gabriela Medero, who conceived the idea of the K-Briq more than 10 years ago, said: “The K-Briq looks like a normal brick, behaves like a clay brick but offers better insulation properties.
“It is sustainable and not kiln-fired so it is far better for the environment and represents massive savings for the construction industry in terms of related taxes.”
Dr Sam Chapman, who works in close partnership with Professor Medero on Kenoteq, added: “Kenoteq has invested in machinery that can produce three million bricks per year.
“In the past year, we’ve produced thousands of bricks and put them through rigorous testing with the K-Briq now commercially available to construction clients.
“The Scottish Government has set very high targets for housebuilding with 50,000 new homes earmarked for construction in the next three years. We hope Kenoteq will be part of those homes.”
Up to 85% of bricks used in Scotland are currently being imported from England or Europe raising considerable questions about the long-term sustainability of the sector.
Source: Construction Enquirer
Kier set to build Crawley
Crawley Borough Council and development firm Westrock have appointed Kier to deliver the new Crawley town hall, the centrepiece of a £150m regeneration of the town centre.
The project will see the demolition of the existing town hall and the construction of a nine-storey building to house the 41,000 sq ft town hall as well as 77,000 sq ft of commercial office space.
Work on the wider regeneration is already underway with 91 apartments, set over nine storeys currently being completed on the site of a former two-storey car park.
Once the new town hall is building is open, the old council building will be demolished to make way for the final phase of redevelopment – a 10-storey block of 182 flats looking on to a new public square.
Chris Lawrence, operations director for Kier Regional Building, said: “As the local Crawley-based office of Kier Regional Building we are delighted to be delivering this project and look forward to seeing the structure take shape in the coming months.”
Source: Construction Enquirer
2019 saw the rise of wind power and collapse of coal
In 2010, Britain generated 75 per cent of its electricity from coal and natural gas. But by the end of the decade these fossil fuels accounted for just 40 per cent, with coal generation collapsing from the decade’s peak of 41 per cent in 2012 to under two per cent in 2019.
The near disappearance of coal power – the second most prevalent source in 2010 – underpinned a remarkable transformation of Britain’s electricity generation over the last decade, meaning the country now has the cleanest electrical supply in its history. As it did at the start of the decade, in 2019 natural gas provided the largest share of Britain’s electricity at 38 per cent, compared with 47 per cent in 2010. Second place now belongs to wind power, which supplied almost 21 per cent of electrical demand in 2019, up from three per cent in 2010.
Twenty-nineteen saw the annual total for coal generation drop below solar and into seventh place for the first time. Britain’s renewables also generated more electricity than coal and natural gas combined over a month for the first ever time in August.
As well as the reduction in carbon emissions, there was another remarkable shift in Britain’s electrical system during the 2010s. The amount of electricity consumed fell by nearly 15 per cent between 2010 and 2019, with the economy using 50 terawatt hours (TWh) less electricity in 2019 than it had done in 2010. That’s enough electricity to power half Britain’s cars and taxis if they were all electric vehicles.
Some of the reduction can be attributed to greater energy efficiency, such as more LED lighting, and the fact that more goods were imported rather than manufactured in Britain. With wages stagnant since 2010, it’s likely that lower economic demand also contributed.
The rise of the renewable generation and the fall in electrical demand allowed coal power to be transitioned off the system. Britain’s electrical grid was coal-free for over 3,700 hours in 2019, something that would have been unthinkable 10 years ago.
Winds of change
Wind energy set a new record of 26.5 per cent for December 2019’s generation in the UK. Including solar, hydroelectric and biomass, renewables provided nearly 37 per cent of that month’s electricity overall, with wind energy reaching a peak of nearly 17 gigawatts (GW) during the afternoon of December 10.
Since August 2018, renewables have produced more electricity than nuclear power for 17 months in a row. Nuclear fell to less than a fifth of electricity generation in 2019 – its lowest level since 2008 – due to extended maintenance periods at six nuclear power stations. This helped the annual output of wind energy to surpass nuclear for the first time in 2019.
But the 2020s will prove an even greater challenge for decarbonisation, not least because Britain’s economy is still heavily dependent on fossil fuels for transport, heating and hot water. Sales of electric vehicles are accelerating, with a quarter of a million now on the roads – but how to decarbonise heating is still up for debate.
Encouragingly, due to cleaner electricity, a major milestone for electric heating is likely to have been reached in 2019. Using electricity from the grid to heat buildings or water is less carbon intensive than burning natural gas to get one kilowatt hour (kWh) of heat from a modern gas boiler. This means that even a simple electric heater releases, on average, less carbon than burning natural gas.
But since natural gas demand varies greatly over a day and between seasons compared to the demand for electricity, a wholesale shift from natural gas to electricity is a significant challenge. Using low-carbon gases such as hydrogen is one option to decarbonise Britain’s heat supply, as are electric heat pumps. Without a sustained focus on shifting heat and the transport sector from fossil fuels, Britain will fail to become a net-zero carbon economy by 2050.
What lies ahead in the 2020s?
Scaling up renewable energy generation has catapulted Britain through a decade of electrical system change but, in order to capitalise on this momentum in the 2020s, low-carbon energy must be complemented with low-carbon flexibility. That must mean the growth of industries focused on energy storage, demand reduction and management, and local control systems, ensuring that the system can continue to meet demand at all times.
After a promising decade of decarbonisation – despite policy setbacks like the green deal – the race is on to be the first G7 country to attain a net-zero carbon economy. Showing that it’s possible to fully decarbonise a large economy while remaining internationally competitive would send an important message to the world.
Source: The Independent
UK public unaware of heating impact on carbon emissions, survey finds
With heating accounting for 37% of UK emissions, latest research from Vestemi has uncovered that over half of people surveyed had no idea their home heating is contributing to the UK’s carbon levels.
When asked how they felt about this fact, 75% of the 200 people surveyed said it made them feel helpless and were unsure about how they could change this. However, when asked if they would put measures in place to help reduce emissions, 78% said they would and were keen to know more about what was available to them. A quarter of respondents said it made them want to take urgent action.
Jeremy Lock, Chief Executive at Vestemi, said: “Unfortunately, there is low awareness around the contribution heating is making to UK emissions, but the good news is there are opportunities for installers to inform and educate customers. It’s clear people are happy to make that change and keen to learn more about how they can play their part.”
Surprisingly, when asked if they were happy to turn their thermostat temperature down to 19oC (an important driver to help reduce emissions), 82% said they would ‘absolutely’ do this, which could dispel the myth that people only want ‘hot’ homes or their thermostat set to over 20oC. This sentiment was shared across all age groups surveyed.
When informed of the types of measures people can put in place within their homes, smart radiator thermostats and insulation were the most popular choice, followed by smart home heating solutions and boiler replacements. Although, for those respondents that were aware of the impact of heating on emissions, the majority had opted for more costly options, such as improving insulation and boiler replacements.
Jeremy continued: “There are so many incremental and cost-effective changes people can start making now, which can also help drive down expensive heating bills. It’s clear the energy industry as a whole needs to raise more awareness of the solutions available. Reducing emissions is not about complicated solutions, it’s about making those small steps to great impact. If we all do a little, and now, we can achieve a lot more in a shorter timeframe and help reach that 2050 net-zero goal.”
Source: HVP Magazine
Univolt goes large with Wembley specification
Contractor, Roc Electrical, has specified Univolt’s maxi-trunking as part of the firms M&E works on the latest phase of Quintain’s Wembley Park development ‘EO5’.
Forming part of the development’s 85-acre project which sees the transformation of an abandoned industrial area into a public facing mixed use space, EO5 includes the construction of three tower block’s ranging between 10 and 21 storey’s high and encompassing 458 apartments.
Roc Electrical will be delivering much of the mechanical and electrical installation, using in excess of 500 lengths of Univolt’s 150 x 100 maxi trunking. The products will be installed in all apartments supporting the feed to the consumer unit and data cabinet via the riser cupboards.
Steve Davis, National Business Development Manager at Dietzel-Univolt commented: “This is a massive project that once completed will become the largest single site of Build to Rent homes in the UK, it also marks an incredibly important regeneration scheme that will ultimately transform the area. We’re incredibly pleased to have been specified as part of the scheme, recognising our products meet the standards expected of a high spec development in terms of both aesthetics and performance.”
Located within close proximity of Wembley Stadium, the development also benefits from features including basement bicycle and car parking, coach parking at ground level and two levels of accessible stadium parking as well as 7,755 sqm of outdoor amenities.
Unique features at the development includes a ‘Mad Hatter’s tea party’, dog garden, urban croquet and a sky lounge with the longest sofa in the UK. The sky lounge, which wraps around a courtyard on the 16th floor is accessible by a slide, and there are also rentable rooftop caravans with a hot tub!
Works are planned for completion in spring 2021.
Source: Electrical Times
Wilo provides rucksacks for London’s homeless
Wilo UK has joined forces with charity Back to Kindness to donate rucksacks that were filled with winter supplies to those living on the streets of London.
The company donated its bright green branded rucksacks that have become synonymous with the company, as well as snoods. The rucksacks were then filled with goods provided by a range of companies, including thermals, gloves, socks, hygiene products, books and food supplies.
David Williamson, director of Wilo UK, said: “Back to Kindness is a great cause at a very significant time of year for the homeless and it was a pleasure to be able to support the team.
“The Wilo branded green rucksacks have become quite well known in the industry for being extremely useful and seemed like the perfect item to donate alongside much needed warm clothing.
“Our own charity, The Wilo Foundation, does a great deal of work for good causes around the world, ranging from supporting regional activity on a small scale to getting involved with global projects.”
Source: HPM Magazine
Manchester Met Uni submits £65m science building plan
Plans to build a £65m science and engineering building at Manchester Metropolitan University have been submitted to Manchester City Council.
The project would see the existing John Dalton West building demolished and a seven-storey academic building constructed in its place at the All Saints campus.
The development would provide for the Faculty of Science and Engineering new teaching spaces, cutting-edge laboratories, academic offices and a new energy centre, as well as extensive public realm works.
The current John Dalton Tower will be refurbished and connected to the new development.
Subject to planning approval, demolition works are expected to commence at the end of 2020, and the works completed in 2023.
A decision on the planning application is expected by March this year.
Professor Andrew Gibson, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the Faculty of Science and Engineering at Manchester Metropolitan, said: “The new building represents our ambition as a faculty and will help us to drive new scientific discovery that will benefit our students, the region and the economy.”
Source: Construction Enquirer
Wates to go waste and carbon free by 2025
Wates has committed to eliminating waste and carbon from its operations by 2025.
The company has committed to three headline targets to help ensure it does ‘zero harm’ to the environment:
- Zero waste from Wates operations by 2025 – reduce and then eliminate the production of all waste created from on-site operations.
- Zero carbon from Wates operations and operational vehicles by 2025 – reduce carbon emissions and become carbon neutral.
- Positive impact on nature from all operations – enhance the natural environment wherever it operates and to increase the value and community benefit of natural environments.
Measure taken will include switching to an all-electric commercial vehicle fleet and eliminating single-use plastic from its operations and supply chain.
Wates will also be investing in sustainable building techniques, organising sustainability placements for graduate and apprenticeship staff, planting 5,000 trees annually and ensuring that all sites or frameworks deliver at least one nature enhancement project.
This year the focus will be on raising awareness, education and engagement and using data collection to set accurate benchmarks.
The company is using a similar approach to its health and safety programme where a target-led approach has resulted in a “sea-change” in culture and behaviour.
David Allen, Wates Chief Executive, said: “We have established bold, ambitious, deliberately stretching targets for creating zero harm to the environment by 2025 because we believe that by committing to something extraordinary, we can achieve something extraordinary.
“Together with our partners, we will reduce waste and carbon, and improve our natural environment for generations to come.
“Our industry has made and continues to make an unhelpful contribution to the global climate crisis.
“We have a responsibility to reduce and eventually to reverse the impact we’re having on our planet and are determined that everyone in the Wates Group will do what is necessary to make a real and lasting difference.”
John Dunne, Group Health, Safety, Environment and Quality Director, added: “We are choosing to take a leading role in reducing our industry’s environmental impact.
“We work with a diverse range of public and private sector partners and businesses of all sizes are part of our supply chain.
“A key part of achieving zero harm to the environment will be working collaboratively with these partners.
“Our strategy will focus our attentions and energies on achieving zero waste, zero carbon and positive nature enhancement by 2025; and everyone has a vital role to play in achieving it.”
Source: Construction Enquirer
Hinkley Point bulk M&E to start in October
Plans are underway to start the bulk mechanical, electrical, heating and ventilating work on the key Hinkley Point C nuclear island site in the Autumn.
The Office of Nuclear Regulation will need to give clearance for the start of the critical work package, after deeming the major milestone a safety-critical stage in the project.
The release of the first bulk MEH hold point by the regulator is expected before on-site work is programmed to start around October this year.
This would be two years since permission for first Nuclear Island concrete was given.
At this point, civil construction work on Unit 1 nuclear island will have reached the point where several individual rooms are structurally complete and ready to hand over from the main civil contractor to the MEH teams.
Balfour Beatty, NG Bailey, Altrad, Cavendish Nuclear and Doosan Babcock are all linked up in the MEH alliance to co-ordinate delivery of the complex installation of cabling and pipework.
Once started, the first bulk MEH installation across both reactor units will take place over a period of around three years, although detailed MEH system completions will continue well beyond that.
The MEH programme involves electrical and mechanical installations encompassing around 4,000 rooms, employing 3,500 workers.
Works will involve 380km of pipework, 20,000 valves, with thousands of welds and associated radiography, and 9000 km of cabling.
Source: Construction Enquirer