Our design approach

Each facility is different and presents its own issues. This is where our effective problem solving approach comes in to tackle the challenge of developing a design that will guarantee optimum performance.

A building’s internal climate is affected by various factors: its location, orientation, the materials used in its construction, as well as what it is used for. The building interacts with the environment, so that its internal climate is affected by seasonal changes in weather conditions and temperature.

In the case of a power plant, additional factors come into play: excess heat, humidity, required process air and contaminants resulting from the energy generation process, as well as odour in the case of Energy from Waste facilities.

Our integrated approach takes into consideration all the factors affecting the power generation plant’s internal climate to tackle the ventilation challenges it poses:

  • Excessive temperatures - the plant typically has min/max operating temperatures for optimum efficiency and unacceptable working conditions for staff
  • Poor indoor air quality 
  • Excessive condensation
  • Need to ventilate in all weather conditions
  • Under pressure (draught) – may reduce ventilation efficiency
  • Risk of explosion
  • High noise break out impacts on the local environment
  • Odour (from Energy from Waste facilities) – impacts on the local environment
  • Fire safety.

Wherever possible, Colt will design solutions that make use of natural ventilation, which reduces running costs through the reduced consumption of energy. The many advantages of this solution include:

  • No energy consumption
  • No CO2 emissions
  • Minimal maintenance
  • Silent operation
  • Self regulating – the hotter the air, the more air can be moved
  • Very low operating costs
  • Long life span
  • Not liable to breakdown

In order to provide the most efficient and cost-effective solution, it is essential that design considerations relating to ventilation are considered at the earliest stage.

Where conditions permit, it is possible for Colt to provide a system that warms the incoming air by directing the heat generated by the plant down to low level, adding energy recovery to the benefits of our natural ventilation solutions.

In cases where the design of the building or the client’s requirements do not permit the use of natural ventilation, Colt will use mechanical ventilation to achieve the desired result.

Simulations for optimum solutions

Colt makes use of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to simulate flows and heat transfer within buildings. This tool enables Colt experts to predict flows and transfer of energy within a specific building in different situations. The CFD tool can also be loaded with the data resulting from thermal imaging, which identifies sources of heat within a building, to create simulations of flows and heat transfer and develop solutions to reduce excessive heat. CFD analysis can be used to develop the best smoke control and ventilation systems to achieve the ideal Colt conditions: a comfortable, safe and energy-efficient internal climate.

Some CFD examples

The splice above shows a multi-height building with areas open to each other. The CFD shows that the neutral plane occurs within the highest section of the building and, therefore, only provides extract in this area with inlet spread at low level across all areas.The splice above shows a multi-height building with areas open to each other. The CFD shows that the neutral plane occurs within the highest section of the building and, therefore, only provides extract in this area with inlet spread at low level across all areas.
This illustration shows air movement and velocity, providing a good indication of best locations of inlet and extract ventilators.This illustration shows air movement and velocity, providing a good indication of best locations of inlet and extract ventilators.
Due to the design of the turbine building shown here, CFD shows hot spots under the central slab. Even though the natural ventilation is dealing with the warm air in the upper level, ducted mechanical ventilation would need to be used to deal with the hot spots within the lower level.Due to the design of the turbine building shown here, CFD shows hot spots under the central slab. Even though the natural ventilation is dealing with the warm air in the upper level, ducted mechanical ventilation would need to be used to deal with the hot spots within the lower level.

Measurements to create a Colt internal climate – the Colt survey

Where the building already exists, Colt offers a pre-order design service including a site survey. Colt uses the latest technologies to carry out studies in the fields of thermal and acoustic climate, airflow and pressure, air quality and safety. Having documented detailed measurement results, Colt experts are able to identify possible issues and recommend improvements and solutions. The detailed analysis enables them to design tailor-made concepts fully suited to the situation, providing systems that are guaranteed to perform as required.

Contact us to arrange a survey.