Arguably, the most popular systems for commercial projects are VRV/VRF systems, these are modular heat pump systems. The systems use a pipework distribution system to connect all the components. Refrigerant is used to provide both cooling and heating and electricity is used as the power source.
These systems are inherently very reliable and very efficient having high COP’s with A++ energy ratings. Running and owning costs are very low and are available in a number of different versions, either air or water cooled. Heat recovery systems can utilise waste energy to provide free cooling or heating within larger buildings.
VRV/VRF systems provide year round heating or cooling and can also provide hot water as well. Hybrid VRF uses water as the final heat transfer medium avoiding the need for refrigerant detection that may be required for some applications. VRV systems can now also be used with small outdoor units or split modules which assists with space or planning issues.
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Many options are available with various means of controlling, both locally, centrally and remote, you can have cooling only, cooling and heating or heat recovery. Heat recovery can be used in some buildings to reduce fuel consumption by recovering waste heat from zones that need cooling to others that may simultaneously require heating.
Split systems can serve single rooms or areas, either cooling only or heat pumps. Multi-split systems effectively are smaller versions of VRV and VRF and can be designed to serve up to 9 small rooms or areas.
Heat recovery ventilation can be combined with any system or used independently to recover waste heat from exhaust air.
Other fan coil systems use a central water chiller providing chilled water to any number of room mounted fan coil units. Heat pumps can also provide hot water for heating and domestic hot water or for 4-pipe fan coil units, or under floor heating.
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