The ECFanGrid offers several advantages over conventional technology, of which the main six are listed below. Scroll down for more information on each benefit.
Typically 40% of a commercial buildings energy use comes from heating, ventilating and cooling with 50% of the HVAC energy consumption coming from fans. The move from AC to EC fans in newer projects, has been significant due to their numerous advantages over their AC comparisons. EC fans can operate outside of their preferred operating range and still maintain a high efficiency, have reduced noise operation when speed controlled and the integrated motor and electronic makes for a compact design. Rosenberg EC fans also have built in controls and monitoring capabilities, enabling users to interrogate alarm outputs for fan faults, allowing individual problems to be addressed before total failure of the AHU. Savings as a result of moving from AC to EC occur from both improved motor efficiency and optimising system design.
ECFanGrids provide superior reliability as a result of their inherent redundancy. If one fan fails, only that portion of the airflow is lost, unlike single fan systems where the entire air handler goes offline. Moreover, the loss of airflow from one plug fan can be offset by increasing the speed of the remaining fans; this can be achieved automatically in conjunction with the building’s BMS system. It allows for the facilities management team to plan for the downtime to suit the need of the building, for example, when the demands on the AHU are lowest. Read more about air flow in the case of a fan failure on the technical info page.
The number of plug fans in each ECFanGrid system can vary according to the airflow requirements. For example, in a wall of 9 fans in a 3×3 configuration where only 7 fans may be required for normal operations to deliver the designed duty, the 8th and 9th space can be blanked off with a plate. If the demands on the AHU increase through building expansion for example, the blanking plates can be removed and 1 or 2 fans added to the grid to meet the new requirements.
ECFanGrids are ideally suited for retrofit AHU projects, particularly where a single large radial fan is being replaced. It is often the case that buildings have expanded around an AHU over its years of operation. This can make the extraction of the old fan problematic but the install of the new fan impossible without minor works to the fabric of the building. The ECFanGrid, due to its smaller component size, can be walked through standard pedestrian doorways by no more than two operatives: a significant factor in maintaining a tight replacement schedule and reducing costs when compared to alternatives. The use of plug fans, where time and space is an issue, risks the least downtime and offers the best opportunity for a rapid return to normal system operation.
Unlike a traditional belt drive unit which covers a large floor space, the ECFanGrid is completely free of the floor. This means that maintaining the hygiene of the AHU is quicker, simpler and more effective. No dust is released into the supply air as there are no belt drives to degenerate over time. Furthermore, component failure is quickly dealt with due to the modular nature of the ECFanGrid. For example, a single fan module could be replaced and the AHU back online within an hour of being shut down.
Case studies show that sound is not an issue when using an ECFanGrid, on the contrary there will be more possibilities to significantly lower noise. When using an ECFanGrid there are two major advantages to attenuate noise. First, the noise spectrum of smaller impellers contains higher frequencies, thus the wave lengths are shorter, allowing for the use of shorter attenuators. Second, the required length of the fan section in a typical air handling unit, using a single large radial fan can be reduced dramatically – in some cases up to 50%. Read more about efficiency and noise within fan systems in our technical article.
If you would like us to specify an ECFanGrid for your application, please complete our retrofit enquiry form with the necessary details and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. One of our team of product sales engineers will be in contact.