- BuildingDesign News - Construction / Services News Archives

Article Date: 6th June 2019

Munters - AHU Fan Upgrade Saves Airport 15gwh of Energy Per Year! Here’s How…

AHU Fan - Heathrow Airport - Zero Carbon - Climate Control

Munters - AHU Fan Upgrade Saves Airport - After

One of Heathrow’s goals is to operate a ZERO carbon airport infrastructure by 2050. Such an ambitious goal for reducing carbon impact calls for serious energy saving initiatives and thanks to Munters AHU upgrade offering this can be become a reality.

Operating four huge passenger terminals, covering almost 600,000 m², the amount of energy used for creating a comfortable indoor climate for passengers, shopkeepers and employees is massive. Energy Project Manager, Andy Dobbs, is responsible for energy saving projects related to all HVAC installations in the terminals.

Since 2016 Andy Dobbs has been working with Munters’ climate control specialists on an extensive energy saving upgrade of air handling equipment in the terminals.
By replacing older, often belt driven, AHU exhaust and process fans with smaller, more energy efficient and maintenance free EC fans in a fan wall configuration, Heathrow has been able to reduce energy consumption on these AHUs by 30-60%.
In total Munters have upgraded more than 150 AHUs, resulting in the installation of approximately 500 EC fans.

Energy savings on these projects amount to an impressive total of 15 GWh, which, equals to the annual energy consumption of no less than 3,400 households (based on UK average).

Upgrade Work Done Overnight
Energy Project Manager Andy Dobbs: “Thanks to Munters’ experience and modular frame and fan plate system, a fan upgrade, typically consisting of a fan wall with 3-6 EC fans, can be performed in one single night shift. For Heathrow that means that the upgrade work itself will have no negative impact on the daily operation, just as passengers and partners in the airport will not be affected. Energy saving from a small fan upgrade like this, taking place over only one night, is equal to the savings from replacing 1,000 light bulbs with LED lights, which would take a month to do.”

AHUs of very different sizes and age have been upgraded, the smallest with an airflow of 5,000 m³/h, the biggest being a plant consisting of four huge AHUs in Terminal 5 (T5), each supplying 230,000 m³/h.

Andy Dobbs: “The extensive documentation provided by Munters in the project phase is important when planning and budgeting for further energy saving projects. Being able to verify savings between 30-60%, the short ROI at only 2½-3 years, make the AHU upgrades very interesting for Heathrow and helps us in reaching our energy saving goals.”

On top of the enormous amount of energy saved, Heathrow also recognizes a number of other benefits, important for the daily operation as well as for passenger comfort:

  • Improved reliability
  • Less maintenance
  • Reduced need of spare parts in stock
  • Reduced noise and vibration level

Munters - AHU Fan Upgrade Saves Airport - BeforeAfter the successful completion of the project, continuous data logging has verified
the calculations, and in total the T5 project saves Heathrow no less than 1.5 GWh per year. The four impressively big fan walls, in total providing an air flow at 920,000 m³/h, might very well be the biggest fan wall in the World so far.

Munters and EC Plug Fans
Energy efficiency has become an integral part of building services design, maintenance and upgrade. Many organisations overlook air handling units (AHUs) when looking to save energy.

Upgrading AHUs with plug fans using EC motor technology can realise significant savings in energy, maintenance and more. Munters has developed a fan wall configuration concept that is pre- designed and makes installation on site easy and very time efficient.

Trust Munters to Upgrade your Air Handlers
From a small single AHU to the largest in the world, our expert team can help you realise energy savings. For more details plus a video about this project at Heathrow airport, click here.

BuildingDesign Media © - BuildingDesign Portal | BuildingDesign Tenders