building: specialist trades: eco-active technology
By incorporating eco-active technologies in your building project, 3b construction can help you save energy and reduce your carbon footprint.
Eco-technology, adapted to local conditions, delivers sustainability and improvements in economic performance while minimising harm to the environment by using natural and recyclable resources to provide heat and power to your building.
Ecoliving is 3b construction’s preferred partner for renewable energy solutions.
Some of the technologies used on previous projects are outlined below.
Heat pumps are energy efficient heating systems that take free, renewable heat energy from the ground, rock or water (ground source heat pumps), from the air (air source heat pumps) and from ventilation air inside a building (exhaust air heat pumps). For one unit of electricity required to run the compressor inside the heat pump, the heat pump delivers up to five units of heat to the heating system - in other words, 500% efficiency. Compare this to oil and gas boilers which are somewhere between 80% and 90% efficient. Heat pumps can replace conventional boilers and deliver space heating, hot water and cooling, where required. Heat pumps can be used in homes, shared community heating systems and commercial, industrial and public buildings.
Heat recovery ventilation
The requirement for managed ventilation in new homes is growing as levels of insulation and air tightness are increased to improve energy efficiency. Damp, stale air needs to be collected and expelled from the house to avoid condensation and mould. Heat recovery ventilation technology recovers heat from the air, and saves considerable amounts of energy by reusing it to heat water or space.
The production of electric power through solar cells is known as solar photovoltaics, or solar PV. Solar PV panels, or modules, consist of a large number of photovoltaic cells made of thin layers of semi-conducting material, normally crystalline silicon, which produce electricity when exposed to light. Solar PV enables property owners to generate electricity through a series of panels, normally situated on the south-facing roof of the building.
Solar thermal technology maximises the free solar energy from the sun to provide approximately 55% of a home's hot water. Panels and a tank are supplied, and these are compatible with most types of current heating systems, including heat pumps and gas, oil and solid-fuel boilers. An immersion heater can also be provided if there is little or no solar gain.
The wood-burning stoves we supply and fit have been built to meet the most stringent safety, efficiency and emissions requirements. They are superbly designed and make burning wood an eco-friendly, renewable, clean and economical option for any home.
Wood and pellets boilers
Biomass is the general term given to combustible organic material harvested and burnt to create energy. In a domestic system, the most common materials used in boilers are wood logs, wood chips and pellets.
These boilers provide a complete central heating system, distributing heat via radiators and producing hot water. They can be used to heat homes, large public buildings and can provide a source for district heating systems.
Underfloor heating provides evenly distributed heat throughout a room, together with high levels of comfort. Working at low temperatures, this form of heat distribution is efficient, effective and economical.
The system involves water heated by a traditional boiler or renewable heat source, such as a heat pump or biomass boiler, being pumped around the floor through a series of pipes attached to a central manifold.
This type of heating allows floor space to be used more efficiently, as there is no need for radiators.
Wind turbine technology is perhaps the best-known renewable energy source, but is often regarded as only being suitable for large, commercial wind farms. Wind turbine technology is constantly evolving, and we can now install smaller wind turbines, well suited to supplying homes, businesses, farms or schools.