Improving comfort, working conditions and motivation is an important consideration for owners and users of commercial structures. Whether it be multi-storey buildings, office, industrial or commercial space, buildings need to provide a healthy and productive working environment.
To help designers and engineers meet this need, high performance ceiling cooling and heating systemsshould be used.
These types of systems are generally energy-efficient, noise-free and draught less cooling and/or heating systems that can be installed in a variety of buildings. As well as enhancing indoor climate, it is an environmentally friendly option and offers excellent long-term performance. Taking the above into consideration, comfort panels in commercial spaces are fast becoming a norm.
Cooling and heating needs
To determine the cooling and heating requirements of a given interior space, any national standard which has been validated for this purpose can be used. The input data for the calculation includes dimensions, location (outdoor conditions) U values, shadings, occupation, internal loads from devices and lighting, ventilation rate, infiltration and room temperature.
Radiant cooling systems can remove sensible loads, but not latent loads. Therefore, in non-residential buildings, careful attention must be paid to ventilation needs in order to achieve an optimal indoor environment. In most cases, a radiant ceiling system will fulfil the cooling requirements of a room or even a complete building.
Air flow needs are calculated to fulfil ventilation requirements according to European standard EN 13779 (Ventilation for Non-Residential Buildings – Performance Requirements for Ventilation and Room-Conditioning Systems).
Ventilation is also important to provide fresh air for the occupants, control air humidity and avoid condensation in cooling mode. Additionally, a control system that prevents condensation must be used.
Many comfort panels are designed as lay-in ceiling panels and can be installed in a standard T grid suspended ceiling structure, that is, in an exposed grid system visible from below. The finished panels are simply placed between the suspended T grids.
Instructions and specifications of the ceiling structure supplier must be followed in order to determine:
- Dimensions of T grids depending on the maximu weight allowed by the structure
- The configuration of the ceiling structure
- The distance between the main runners and cross tees
When designing and installing most comfort panels in commercial spaces, ceiling elements, attention must be paid to architectural and lighting issues, as well as the placement of sprinkler nozzles and fire detectors etc. The main piping for heating and cooling water, air conditioning ducts, wiring, sprinkler piping etc. can be installed in the space above the suspended ceiling.
Benefits of using comfort panels in commercial spaces
Substantial energy and cost savings
- Lower running cost compared to air systems
- Moderate supply water temperature in summer and winter enables use of alternative, renewable energy sources
- No maintenance needed
High level of comfort
- Very even cooling and heat distribution
- High cooling and heating output tested according to EN 14240 and EN 14034
- Fast reaction due to light construction
- Absolutely silent – no noise from fans
- Acoustic absorption
- Low convection, low air movement
Easy integration into building process
- Simple, quick and reliable installation without special tools
- Easy integration with other systems such as mechanical ventilation, lighting and sprinkler systems
- System compatible with existing ceiling grids
- Excellent for both new buildings and refurbishment
The systems can generally be installed in any standard suspended ceiling structure.
Flexibility and freedom in interior design
- No external elements
- Integration into any type of interior design
- Elegant visual appearance
- Flexibility makes it ideal for rooms of variable use or with movable walls
With the large number of green laws and incentives around, comfort panels are fast becoming the latest green design phenomenen.