New solar thermal project for Princess Alexandra Hospital, Essex
Renewable heat and power generation for homes, businesses and communities
Microgeneration completes 12,000kW/h solar thermal project for Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, Essex
Microgeneration Limited, one of the UK’s leading providers and installers of microgeneration systems for homes, businesses and communities has just completed a major solar thermal installation for Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, Essex.
All hospitals are high-demand users of heat and power so any technologies which can reduce costly demand for fossil fuels and simultaneously reduce emissions of harmful CO2 to the atmosphere are increasingly being evaluated by NHS estate managers.
In this case, facing a hike in energy costs, Princess Alexandra Hospital undertook an energy audit to see where cost-effective savings could be made and invited Microgeneration Limited to make some recommendations.
Adrian Clayton, Area Sales Manager of Microgeneration, takes up the story, “All hospitals are large users of hot water and typically, this water is heated up from cold by gas-fired boilers. “But at Princess Alexandra Hospital, we identified a clear opportunity as on one of its buildings there was enough space to mount a good-sized set of south-facing solar panels to provide enough hot water to service a number of hospital buildings, virtually free-of-charge.
The hospital accepted our recommendations and we set about installing a 25m2 solar thermal array, made up of six panels (2.1m x 2.0m per panel), with each one containing 30 evacuated tubes 1.8m in length, all of which have been mounted on a special frame manufactured for us by a local firm, Glasson Metalworks of Welwyn Garden City.
Andrew Bell, Estates manager for Princess Alexandra hospital said, “We knew that evacuated tube technology was a very efficient way of converting the energy from the sun into hot water but we had no idea just how effective it would be. “Within this part of the hospital (a mix of offices, an eye unit and a physiotherapy unit), we use between 500 litres – 700 litres of hot water each day and this water has to be heated to 60°C. “Amazingly, as soon as the solar thermal array was up and running, we were finding that our boiler was running just 20% of the time – and this was with typically mixed March weather. As spring moves into summer, I am hopeful that our conventional boiler will have even less work to do.
“With the success of this first project, we are now considering how we could develop additional green energy heat and power projects on the Princess Alexandra Hospital site.” Having completed this major project on time and within budget, Microgeneration is very keen to work with other NHS facilities to help them cut their consumption of fossil fuels, reduce their carbon footprint and deliver genuine cost savings on heat and power.
For further information, please contact:
Andy Honey, Chief Executive, Microgeneration Limited
Photographs and full technical specification sheet available from Christopher Biggs
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