Andrews high efficiency condensing water heaters for RSA Academy, Tipton

Andrews Water Heaters, part of Baxi Commercial Division, has supplied two high efficiency, condensing water heaters and buffer tanks which have been installed at the new RSA Academy in Tipton, West Midlands. The Academy of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, more generally known as RSA, opened in 2008 and has recently moved into its newly completed building at the start of the 2010 Autumn term. This £23.5 million project provides state-of-the-art facilities for its 1100 students and aims to become a centre of excellence for the teaching of Opening Minds, the RSA’s curriculum which encourages students to discover information for themselves, learn how to work effectively in teams, manage their own time and work to deadlines. The school offers a variety of courses, including the International Baccalaureate and facilities include a fully equipped multifunctional theatre, sports hall, food technology rooms and modern science classrooms. The building was designed in consultation with both staff and, more unusually, with students, who visited the construction site on a regular basis and incorporated some of the practical challenges encountered there in subsequent lessons.  

Sustainability was paramount in the building’s design, in order to reduce both running costs and carbon emissions, which has resulted in a BREEAM rating of ‘Very Good’.

The two SUPAflo condensing gas-fired water heaters were selected by Derry Building Services due to the high demand for domestic hot water on site as their high capacity was coupled with condensing technology which ticked the appropriate boxes in terms of energy efficiency. They were installed in the ground floor plant room in an unvented system along with two storage vessels, providing domestic hot water throughout the building which serves wash hand basins and sinks in cloakrooms, classrooms, laboratories and kitchens as well as showers adjacent to the sports facilities. The SUPAflo SF64 models selected each have an output of 285 kW and a recovery rate of 4,880 litres per hour through a temperature rise of 50oC.

The SUPAflo SF60 range of condensing water heaters is the latest introduction to Andrews’ instantaneous range, designed to provide a constant supply of hot water in large volumes for a variety of commercial and industrial applications. This is a low water content unit with a stainless steel finned tube heat exchanger and stainless steel headers and manifold. The unit can operate either instantaneously providing hot water on demand or, as in this installation, with a buffer storage vessel and is suitable for either vented or unvented systems. There are seven models in the range, offering outputs from 142 to 539 kW, providing hot water recovery rates from 2430 to 9230 litres per hour through a temperature rise of 50ºC from a single unit.

The SUPAflo SF60 range has a net efficiency of 103% with a downward firing, blown gas, pre-mix, water cooled burner that fully modulates between 20% and 100% providing ultra low NOx and CO2 emissions. The unit is lightweight, with a very small footprint which offers greater siting flexibility, with a room sealed facility if required. In addition to the standard features, the SF60 also comes with a gas filter and condensate trap and has the facility to control and power its own Bronze UPS primary circulator. The comprehensive control panel indicates all operational and lockout status with full history and, as in this installation, provides connection to a site-wide Building Energy Management System.

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