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MITSUBISHI ELECTRIC - More Energy-Saving Focus Needed On Existing Building Stock

Mitsubishi Electric used its stand at the Ecobuild Show (1-3 March 2011, ExCel, London) to focus attention on the need to upgrade existing buildings using the energy-saving potential of advanced heating, cooling, ventilation and power generating equipment.

“We have come a long way with new-build properties as was seen with some of the innovations at Ecobuild,” explains Donald Daw, Mitsubishi Electric’s Commercial Director. “However, there remain millions of homes and commercial buildings which will still be in use for decades to come so we need to find more ways of reducing energy consumption here.”

The company used its appearance at the Show (Stand S2030) to highlight the latest developments in renewable domestic and commercial heating, with the Ecodan® range of air source heat pumps that can help both new-build and retro-fit achieve renewable energy targets, cut fuel bills and provide reliable heating for almost any building.

Ecodan provides low carbon heating and hot water, with domestic models available in 5kW; 8.5kW and 14kW units and the commercial range starting from 43.5kW and scalable up to 688kW.

Also on the stand was advanced Photovoltaic (PV) Arrays which can not only lower overall power consumption but also help generate an income through the Government’s Feed In Tariff (FIT) by selling excess energy back to the grid.

Mitsubishi Electric is unique in the world of PV because it manufactures all of the individual components – the cells, the panels and the inverters – and is also the first UK manufacturer to develop a complete PV Pack, designed specifically for residential properties with pitched roofs.

“As our buildings become more energy efficient and airtight, proper ventilation becomes more important and technology is available to recover heat from stale air to minimise the energy needed to heat or cool fresh air,” adds Daw. “We need to make sure that we get as much of this innovative technology working together to maximise the energy performance of every building, old and new.”

Mitsubishi Electric also showcased its DC Lossnay heat recovery ventilation system which addressed the need to provide energy efficient ventilation to well-insulated modern homes. Unlike other heat recovery ventilation systems, which use aluminium or plastic, Lossnay has a unique paper core which not only maximises energy transfer but also ensures that the moisture content is balanced. This avoids dry static air in winter and moist, damp air in summer.

A major advantage of this is that in summer, when houses have heated up during the day, a special bypass mode can be used to bring in cool fresh air at night, eliminating the need for mechanical cooling. Mitsubishi Electric has taken a stance against any major growth of air conditioning for the UK’s homes as unnecessary and unsustainable.

In the commercial sector though, the company is a strident advocate of the increased use of advanced air conditioning to provide energy efficient buildings with a comfortable internal environment. On the stand was the new City Multi YJM-A outdoor unit which offers some of the highest levels of efficient simultaneous heating and cooling available.

“Legislation is increasingly driving the way we use energy in our buildings and rising fuel prices mean that there has never been a better time to find ways of improving things,” explains Daw. “By using the technology now available together, there is a real potential to tackle the problem of existing buildings using advanced energy saving equipment,” he ends.

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