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Hello sunshine Print

May 2, 2017


Following almost four years under construction, the Queensland Government’s new $1.8 billion Sunshine Coast University Hospital officially opened to the public in April 2017.

A tertiary teaching hospital servicing the growing healthcare needs of the Sunshine Coast community, the facility opened with 450 beds but will grow to become a 738-bed hospital following the completion of further stages by 2021. This will mean about 10,000 patients each year will avoid having to travel to Brisbane for complex treatment.

The hospital was designed and built under a Private Public Partnership (PPP) contract with Exemplar Health, a consortium comprising of Lendlease, Siemens and Capella Capital, with partners Spotless Facilities Services. Leading mechanical services contractor AE Smith was appointed by Lendlease to install and commission the hospital’s HVAC systems based on a design by consulting engineers Aurecon.

The main hospital building features six levels totaling 164,000m² of space, while a helipad and plant rooms are located on the roof. A centralised plant arrangement accommodates chillers, cooling towers and all major HVAC plant and pumping equipment.

Designed to deliver best practice in sustainable design principles, construction and operation, the hospital targeted 4-star Green Star ‘Design’ and ‘As Built’ ratings under the Green Building Council of Australia’s sustainability rating system.

Contributing to this sustainable performance is an energy efficient HVAC system incorporating a predominantly variable air volume (VAV) design. This design includes the installation of over 4,100 Rickard electronic VAV diffusers. They enabled the VAV operation to change from a traditional large zone design to a system with smaller thermal zones that provide greater thermal comfort control.

Each VAV diffuser was also fitted with air flow sensors that allowed precise air flow control and measurement during setup and commissioning.

All diffusers were air balanced electronically from the central BMS so no air flow hood readings were required with this building.

Rickard VAV diffusers automatically adjust to ensure the correct air flow is always supplied into the zones. This enables the prescribed number of air changes required by Queensland Health to be delivered (particularly in critical areas), leading to a well-ventilated indoor environment.

Energy efficiency is also achieved by the units’ ability to allow only the required volume of warm or cold air to enter the conditioned space. If the required volume reduces, the diffuser’s aperture size also reduces. The increase in duct pressure is picked up by a sensor which signals the system’s fans to slow down.

As well as providing energy efficient comfort control, the Rickard diffusers were selected to provide easy, non-disruptive maintenance. If required, the thermal settings for each zone within the building can be adjusted remotely without affecting the patients. Fantech also supplied approximately 800 fans and 570 attenuators on the project.

Fantech is a company that stand by their product and offer equipment that can deliver what it promises, said AE Smith Project Manager, Kevin Kent.

 


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