A multi-national IT company has become the latest corporation to adopt solar thermal as an integral part of its sustainability strategy at its new, landmark offices in Dublin, Ireland. The building, based at the city’s prestigious EastPoint Business Park, has already earned a top global accreditation for its environmental efficiency – LEED ‘Platinum’ rating.
The company has installed a state-of-the-art rooftop solar thermal system, consisting of 150 Kingspan Thermomax HP400 evacuated tubes covering an area of 15 sq m, plus a 1,000-litre solar indirect twin coil cylinder. The system is designed to heat all the domestic hot water used by the building’s occupants – around 2,300 litres per day. The outcome will be not only a significant reduction in the company’s carbon footprint but also an enhancement of the overall heating efficiency of the building, which will significantly reduce its running costs.
Kingspan Solar’s engineers used T*SOL software to estimate an energy yield of 9.83 MWh/year and annual natural gas savings of 1,270.8m3.
William Comerford, Commercial Specification Manager at Kingspan Solar, advises: “We are delighted we were asked to be closely involved in this significant development with our engineers supporting the client’s team at all stages, from design specification right through to installation.
“Seeing this technology and renewable energy in action in the workplace is a morale booster for employees and great for visitors to see. The adoption of a renewable energy technology, such as solar thermal, is not just an ethical issue, it also represents a financially sound investment for companies and we hope many more will follow this example.”
The solar thermal system was not the only focus for the team overseeing the build. The principal contractor ensured the new offices met all the relevant energy efficiency standards. These included the BREEAM construction scheme criteria relating to the environmental life cycle of new non-domestic buildings, as well as Part L of the Building Regulations for conservation of fuel and power. They also incorporated a green Biosolar roof to support the solar output as well as provide easier installation and maintenance of the system. The vegetation provides a cooling effect and helps create a constant ambient temperature within the building, increasing the solar efficiency.
The outcome of all this investment and focus on the environment is that the property has been awarded a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) ‘Platinum’ accreditation, underlining its attainment and sustainable credentials. LEED is a leading global green building rating system, providing independent verification of a building’s green features, encouraging the development of resource-efficient, high-performing, healthy, cost-effective buildings.
William adds: “We, at Kingspan Solar, as well as our construction partners, share a passion for creating low carbon, energy efficient environments. Solar thermal inclusions in commercial office spaces will significantly help to mitigate the negative effects of climate change.
“This building project has presented an opportunity for us to drive community involvement and engagement with renewables and to demonstrate that the use of renewable energy is an integral part of our business ethic. Given Kingspan Solar’s technology and its product quality, we know this project will not only help our client deliver on its sustainability goals, but also provide inspiration as to the opportunities offered by renewable technology installations in the workplace.”
“We are delighted to be in the vanguard of the growing adoption of renewable energy by businesses and households across the country.”