> Choosing Air Conditioning
is an Air Conditioner?
term air conditioner applies to a product that, by using the physical
properties of a coolant, can lower air temperatures and often lower
Do They Work?
Air conditioners use the same basic principles to achieve a cooling
effect as common household fridges and freezers, but the cooling
is directed into a room and not the inside of an appliance. The
systems operate by utilising the physical properties of air to remove
heat energy and water vapour.
room temperature, water is liquid, but when heated it becomes a
gas - steam. Cooling the steam returns it to its liquid form. Reversing
the process has a cooling effect. By returning the liquid to a gas
it has to regain heat energy by taking in heat from its surroundings
- rapidly releasing cool air.
The cooling circuit is made from a thin pipe forming a closed loop
through which the liquid or gas flows. Throughout the circuits length
there are various exchanges of heat energy. The substance changes
its saturation of water vapour and ultimately its state from a liquid
to a gas. The final emission is a low temperature gas with the excess
heat being expelled outside the building.
of the different types of unit:
• Partially Centralised
• Packaged or Split System
• Multi Split System
• Window Air to Air
• Air to Water
• Split units
are a large variety of systems available to suit every need and
budget. From monobloc portable units available for short term rental
to centralised installed system with numerous ducts costing many
thousands. One of the most common office systems is the ‘Split
System’ which can be installed on a room by room basis with
an external cooling unit and an internal duct.
Things to Consider
An air conditioned office not only offers a more comfortable working
environment but research has proven it has marked effect on staff
efficiency and safety. According to statistics the optimum temperature
for worker performance is at 18 degrees Celsius, at 24 degrees productivity
falls by 10%. Above 24 degrees workers are 23% more likely to have
an accident. These statistics make a convincing argument for the
implementation for air conditioning.
Traditionally the gas used for fixed air conditioners were CFCs
which were found to contribute to the depletion of the ozone layer.
Modern air conditioning units use alternative environmental friendly
The initial cost of installing an air conditioning system can be
prohibitively expensive. Some companies prefer to install in an
ad-hoc room by room manner to avoid such large capital out-lays.
Others rent a portable air conditioner during the summer months;
however, this is very much a short term solution. Nowadays many
office building come with an air conditioning system pre-installed
so such decisions are not necessary. It is however important to
remember that the running costs of an air conditioning system can
add significant cost to the rent of office space.