Last week I attended the 36th AIVC Conference in Madrid. The conference is an initiative from the International Network on Ventilation and Energy Performance on behalf of the Air Infiltration and Ventilation Centre, TightVent Europe, Venticool and the Eduardo Torroja Institute for Construction Science. During two days scientists, researchers and professionals within ventilation, construction and energy efficiency meet to share knowledge and experience about how to best walk the tightrope between energy efficiency and indoor air quality.
As with every conference of this magnitude, there is a lot of information to take in and process. I thought that I would share the three key findings that I made during this year’s conference with you.
Energy targets can’t be reached without effective ventilation
High level regulation on energy use is now spreading throughout Europe and the targets cannot be reached without effective ventilation. To make the house highly insulated and airtight is of course needed but in order to have a good indoor air quality we need to ventilate both for the people and the house itself. It then becomes very important that the energy transported away by the ventilation somehow is brought back to the building.
The map is drawnThe Kyoto agreement is a vision for a healthy sustainable world. The building regulations to reach this vision are now set in most of the European countries. Lindab has actively participated to make this happen through:
Standardization: Develop standards on a European level in order to be able to set and display quality indicators transparent to professionals, end-users and Building regulation administrators.
Products: Develop and produce quality products that comply with regulations and meet the expectations of the end-users.
Measure progress in the countries: Highlight best practice and initiatives from field studies and database analyses in the European member states with TightVent, AIVC, REHVA and QUALICHeCK for professionals involved in building regulations.
Compliance: Support developments of tools and databases as well as field studies and exchange of experience to improve compliance and promote self-control amongst craftsmen with our involvement in TightVent and QUALICHeCK.
Conferences: Actively support conferences organized by TightVent, AIVC and REHVA to make researchers, industry, building regulators and politicians meet in the same venue and exchange experience.
Inadequate installation and maintenance wastes the benefits
Several researchers showed that mechanical ventilation with heat exchanger is superior to natural or hybrid ventilation but ventilation tends to perform poorly the more complex it gets. The research comes to the conclusion that the more advanced ventilation systems often don’t perform better than the simpler systems when it comes to energy efficiency and indoor air quality. This is mainly due to inadequate installation and maintenance. You could see this as a deficiency but it is actually a great opportunity for any supplier that can provide an air tight, understandable, easily installed ventilation system made by great components.