2016 Press releases






AIRAH and the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage sign collaborative agreement

AIRAH and the New South Wales Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) will join forces to promote and enhance energy-efficiency practices and services within the heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC&R) industry and with the end-users of these technologies. 

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH, says the agreement is an important step towards promoting a better understanding of HVAC&R energy efficiency.

“AIRAH and OEH have long held a strong collaborative relationship,” says Gleeson. “The agreement solidifies the parties’ commitment to enhance the skills, knowledge and opportunities for HVAC&R service providers to assist NSW businesses. It will also support both organisations’ current and future programs, schemes and related initiatives. AIRAH is committed to conducting cross-promotion activities, communications, and to deliver other appropriate support to OEH’s relevant activities.”

As per the agreement, some initial areas of focus will be the commercial refrigeration sector, HVAC optimisation, energy-efficiency training courses, PRIME, the NSW Energy Savings Scheme, NABERS, and other industry events. 

Underlining Gleeson’s sentiments, AIRAH executive manager – government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH, is looking forward to working collaboratively with OEH to explore a range of potential projects. 

“There are several exciting developments already in the pipeline,” says Wilkinson. “We will assist in a national delivery of co-branded OEH energy-efficiency training courses, and work to develop commercial refrigeration information material, such as an optimisation guide and fact sheets. A cool room/freezer room benchmarking tool is also on the cards. 

“Also, off the back of the successful co-branded, jointly developed HVAC Optimisation Guide, we’re looking to further advance strategies to enhance the market’s capacity to deliver energy-efficient HVAC services.” 

AIRAH will deliver co-branded versions of the OEH’s Energy-efficient commercial refrigeration, Introduction to HVAC and Advanced HVAC training courses in all Australian states and territories, excluding NSW.

Both parties will promote selected initiatives to its members, program participants, and newsletter recipients through their various communication channels. 

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AIRAH and IBPSA announce international Building Simulation Conference for 2017

AIRAH and the International Building Performance Simulation Association (IBPSA) are proudly hosting a joint Building Simulation Conference in Melbourne, running from November 15–16, 2017.

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH, says the conference is a worthy addition to the Institute’s suite of events.

“Building Simulation 2017 will provide a unique forum for the exchange of ideas and information between simulation researchers, simulation developers, building designers, and government legislators,” Gleeson says. “It will explore how simulation is helping to improve building performance, and will be an excellent opportunity to keep up to date with the latest innovations in the field of simulation and the energy performance of buildings.”

Call for abstracts

The conference will be a blend of academic and industry technical papers and posters on the latest in building simulation. The conference committee is now calling for abstracts on an array of subjects, including but not limited to:
  • Building energy simulation: teaching, practice, research, insights
  • Lighting and daylighting simulation: teaching, practice, research, insights
  • Application of computational fluid dynamics in buildings 
  • Uncertainty, validation and risk management
  • Calibration of models for deep retrofits
  • Model-based control and controls design tools
  • Building information modelling and import from CAD
  • Thermal comfort modelling
  • Building regulation and policy
  • Occupant behaviours
  • Urban scale modelling. 

Abstract submission process

Abstracts are sought for peer-reviewed papers to be presented at the conference. The conference committee encourages the submission of abstracts of papers on any aspect of building-related performance modelling and associated software techniques.

Abstract submissions must not exceed 300 words and should also include a separate 100-word author biography and high-resolution author photo. Abstracts should be sent to conferences@airah.org.au by Friday, February 17, 2017. 

Abstracts will be judged primarily on scientific soundness of the applied methods and the degree to which the contribution advances the state of the art. 

Authors of accepted abstracts must submit a technical paper that will be double-blind reviewed in separate academic and industry streams.

For more information or for sponsorship enquiries about the Building Simulation 2017 Conference, email conferences@airah.org.au or go to www.airah.org.au/conferences 

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AIRAH announces essential national seminar series on updated refrigeration standards

Kicking off in February 2017, AIRAH and Standards Australia will present a seminar series on the recently adopted and published refrigeration safety and environmental standards. The seminars will provide an introduction and overview to the main changes affecting the HVAC&R industry.

The standards to be put under the microscope will be AS/NZS/ISO 817:2016 Refrigerants – Designation and safety classification, which replaces AS/NZS 1677.1:1998; and AS/NZS 5149 Refrigerating systems and heat pumps – Safety and environmental requirements: Parts 1 to 4, which replaces AS/NZS 1677.2:1998. 

Each of these new adoptions has had major modifications and revisions over the previous AS/NZS1677 series, and are critical in the transition to low-global-warming potential (GWP) refrigerants. 

“All stakeholders who have an interest in the HVAC&R industry should familiarise themselves with the new refrigeration safety and environmental requirements,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH. 

“Compliance with these standards can help everyone in the HVAC&R supply chain demonstrate duty of care. I strongly encourage system designers, installers, owners, and those involved in operation and maintenance to educate themselves on these important new international minimum safety and environmental benchmarks.” 

The seminar series will be presented by Kevin Lee, M.AIRAH, who brings to the table nearly 40 years of local and overseas experience in HVAC&R manufacturing, product design, and regulatory compliance. 

Lee is a former chair of the Standards Australia technical committee on refrigeration safety requirements, and represented Australia as a technical expert on the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) technical committee for refrigeration safety.
He was also chair of the joint industry and government task group that authored AIRAH’s Flammable Refrigerants Safety Guide. 

The AIRAH and Standards Australia 2017 Refrigeration Standards Updates seminars will take place: 

  • Brisbane – Tuesday, February 14
  • Canberra – Wednesday, February 15 
  • Sydney – Thursday, February 16
  • Hobart – Tuesday, February 21
  • Melbourne – Wednesday, February 22 
  • Perth – Wednesday, March 1
  • Adelaide – Thursday, March 2 

All sessions will run from 7.30am to 11am.

“All stakeholders who have an interest in refrigeration and air conditioning should have an interest in the new refrigeration safety and environmental standards,” says AIRAH’s executive manager of government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH. “Nobody wants refrigeration and air conditioning to hurt people or damage the environment.”

For more information and to register online, go to www.airah.org.au/seminars
 
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2016 AIRAH Awards winners announced

The winners of the AIRAH Awards 2016 were announced at a glittering black-tie gala held at Sydney’s Luna Park on Thursday, November 10. 

Now established as the HVAC&R industry’s top accolades, the AIRAH Awards honour the outstanding individuals, projects, and products of the past year. Representing all facets of the industry, this year’s winners included a solar-thermal PhD student, a NABERS program manager, an immersion-based cooling system, an innovative 6 Star Green Star university building, and an energy-efficient supermarket retrofit.  

“The 2016 AIRAH Awards winners are all doing their part to shape our industry, but also that of the greater built environment,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M. AIRAH. “The judging panel had the unenviable task of choosing the winners from a truly outstanding group of finalists – it is the most competitive field year we’ve ever had. I’d like to congratulate our impressive and inspiring winners, as well as acknowledge the exceptional work and quality of all the finalists. It goes without saying that these people, projects, and products are a beacon for excellence and innovation in our industry.”

Winners of the AIRAH Awards 2016 are:
  • AIRAH Future Leader Award: Carlos Flores, M.AIRAH, from NABERS
  • Research Student of the Year: Xiaolin Wang, Stud.AIRAH
  • Trade Student of the Year: Michael Snook, Affil.AIRAH
  • Award for Excellence in Innovation: Lommers Engineering’s DownUnder GeoSolutions High-Performance Computer Cooling Systems
  • Award for Excellence in Sustainability: the work by Umow Lai on the School of Design at the University of Melbourne
  • Best HVAC&R Retrofit or Upgrade: Refrigeration Innovations’ work at the IGA Boccaccio Cellars, Melbourne
  • Product of the Year: Fast Works’ X-Operative TAB
  • WR Ahern Award: Josh Wall, M.AIRAH – “Predictive control of refrigerated facilities for improved energy management.” 

The AIRAH Awards 2016 sponsors are Mitsubishi Electric (event sponsor), A.G. Coombs (Future Leader), NABERS (Excellence in Sustainability), Standards Australia (Excellence in Innovation), Grosvenor Engineering Group (Student of the Year), ActronAir (dinner sponsor and Best HVAC&R Retrofit or Upgrade), and Daikin (after-dinner speaker sponsor).

For more information about the AIRAH Awards 2016, go to www.airahawards.org.au

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Building physics the focus of AIRAH’s newest Special Technical Group

After being ratified by the AIRAH board, the Institute’s new Special Technical Group (STG) dedicated to building physics is now up and running. The AIRAH Building Physics Special Technical Group brings together professionals from the discipline to better understand issues, identify necessary actions, and collaborate on efforts to move the industry forward. 

The AIRAH Building Physics STG will join others dedicated to resilience, ESD, solar cooling, backflow prevention, and refrigeration.   

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH, says the group has clear intent.

“For too long issues affecting the building envelope have not received the priority they deserve,” Gleeson says. “The purpose of AIRAH’s Building Physics STG is to bring building science principles, guidance and standardisation to the mainstream Australian construction industry.”

The AIRAH Building Physics STG aims to provide members with a platform for involvement in issues that affect their industry in relation to air infiltration, including policy advice, regulation development, and the development of – and access to – industry-leading advice. 

“Over recent years there have been many issues raised about building envelopes, and their construction and integrity in relation to air leakage and moisture control,” says AIRAH executive manager – government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH. “With a considerable amount of research and work happening in isolation around the country and overseas, this new STG can help consolidate and promulgate some pretty high-level information.”

Indeed, the Building Physics STG has already released its first piece of output, a report titled “Improving Australian Housing Envelope Integrity”, which deals with correct building sealing for residential projects. The report, which aims to unlock the ability of Australia to deliver increasingly better-performing building enclosures that can meet or exceed their design intent, is available free on the AIRAH website. 

Jesse Clarke, M.AIRAH, has been elected as the STG’s president, with Sean Maxwell, M.AIRAH, as vice-president, and outgoing AIRAH board director Nathan Groenhout, F.AIRAH, serving as secretary.

Clarke says the STG needs to be clear about its scope, purpose and output.

“We will be focusing on air-flow and moisture migration through the building enclosure, with correct integration with HVAC systems to maintain thermal performance, acoustic performance, water ingress and healthy conditions in all classes of buildings,” he says.

Gleeson says that the Institute’s STGs perform a crucial function of syphoning critical technical information to the wider AIRAH membership.  

“AIRAH is committed to providing members and stakeholders with technically accurate, unbiased information relating to industry issues,” says Gleeson. “The STGs provide a vehicle for our industry leaders to understand, interpret, and provide guidance to members and stakeholders in an unbiased and fact-based manner. The Building Physics STG will look to carry on this tradition, and will add to the expanding line-up of groups.”

To access “Improving Australian Housing Envelope Integrity” go to www.airah.org.au/research

For more information about AIRAH’s STGs, or to get involved, go to www.airah.org.au/STG

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AIRAH’s Refrigeration 2017 Conference calls for abstracts

Announced in the aftermath of the historic ratification of COP21, AIRAH’s Refrigeration 2017 Conference will be held in Melbourne on March 27–28 next year. The conference committee is now calling for abstracts.

Refrigeration 2017 will focus on the state of the industry, how it should respond to the challenges initiated by COP21 and the global HFC phase-down, and how this will impact upon educators, legislators, regulators, end users, engineers, consultants and technicians. 

“The AIRAH Refrigeration 2017 conference will explore how industry needs to continue to adapt to the very far-reaching developments resulting from the COP21 ratification,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH. “The conference will also delve into how we as an industry move towards clients being more committed to achieving greater levels of energy efficiency and emission reduction.”

The conference committee is calling for abstracts on an array of subjects, including but not limited to:
  • New technologies, research and trends – natural refrigerants, synthetic refrigerants, geothermal and non-vapour compression cycle.
  • Case studies – of particular interest are projects featuring replacement of HFCs and HCFCs with natural refrigerants or with low-GWP synthetic gases.
  • Legislation/standards – developments in Australia and internationally.
  • Safety and compliance.
  • International market developments, particularly in the US and Europe.
  • Energy efficiency and the refrigeration industry.  
Also included as part of the conference will be sessions reviewing the latest technologies on offer. The conference trade display will give participants an opportunity during breaks and at the cocktail functions to interact with leading industry suppliers on the latest refrigeration technology offerings.  

AIRAH thanks the conference committee comprised of Ben Adamson, F.AIRAH; Jonathan Fryer, M.AIRAH; Julian Hudson, M.AIRAH; Stefan Jensen, F.AIRAH; René Le Miere; and Ben Quast, M.AIRAH.

By submitting an abstract, speakers are also agreeing to submit a technical paper and/or PowerPoint presentation before the conference, should their application to present be successful. The conference committee has the final say on accepted presentations.

All submissions must also include a 100-word author biography and high-resolution author photo. Abstracts should be sent to AIRAH conference organiser Emily McLaughlin by Friday, November 25, 2016. Email: conferences@airah.org.au  

For information about the Refrigeration 2017 Conference, including sponsorship opportunities, go to www.airah.org.au/refrigeration2017 or email conferences@airah.org.au
 
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A thumbs-up from AIRAH for new refrigeration standards adoption

Strong industry and government engagement has seen Australia adopt international (ISO) standards for refrigeration safety. These documents supersede the AS/NZS 1677 series. The changes were first proposed by AIRAH in 2010.

“PRIME, the HVAC&R industry strategy to transition to low emissions, identified very early on that AS/NZS 1677 needed to be reviewed,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH. “In response to stakeholders’ needs Standards Australia worked closely with industry and government, and supported PRIME to achieve this major milestone.” 

Significant changes have been made to refrigeration standards, with the following now published and available: 
  • AS/NZS ISO 817:2016, Refrigerants – Designation and safety classification 
  • AS/NZS 5149.1:2016, Refrigerating systems and heat pumps – Safety and environmental requirements – Part 1: Definitions, classification and selection criteria 
  • AS/NZS 5149.2:2016, Refrigerating systems and heat pumps – Safety and environmental requirements – Part 2: Design, construction, testing, marking and documentation 
  • AS/NZS 5149.3:2016, Refrigerating systems and heat pumps – Safety and environmental requirements – Part 3: Installation site
  • AS/NZS 5149.4:2016, Refrigerating systems and heat pumps – Safety and environmental requirements – Part 4: Operation, maintenance, repair and recovery

“The adoption of these standards is a really important step as the HVAC&R industry transitions to a low emission future,” says AIRAH’s executive manager – government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH. 

“Last weekend saw the announcement that global agreement had been reached on an HFC phase-down, and this international alignment of standards supports our shift away from HFC refrigerants and towards low-global-warming refrigerant alternatives.”

As direct or modified adoptions of international standards, AS/NZS ISO 817 supersedes AS/NZS 1677.1:1998, Refrigerating systems – Refrigerant classification. The AS/NZS 5149 series supersedes AS/NZS 1677.2:1998 Refrigerating systems – Safety requirements for fixed applications.

AIRAH thanks John Mott, M.AIRAH, and Ben Adamson, M.AIRAH, for representing the Institute on the Standards committee.

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AIRAH takes ownership of comprehensive HVAC&R training resource

AIRAH has taken over responsibility for the Australian Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning (ARAC) Manuals Volumes 1 and 2, lauded since its original release in 1988 as the country’s primary resource for training the refrigeration and air conditioning industry.     
Authored by Graham Boyle, M.AIRAH, the Australian Refrigeration and Air-conditioning Manual, Volumes 1 and 2 covers everything from the basic principles of refrigeration through to equipment, tools, principles, systems, testing, load estimating, installation, maintenance and commissioning.

Now published by AIRAH, the Manual combines coverage of both new trends and industry fundamentals. Adopting a new full-colour format for its latest edition, it also includes helpful images that make for easier reading and understanding.

“Providing quality technical resources and access to knowledge is one of AIRAH’s most important reasons for being,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH. 

“The ARAC Manual represents possibly the most complete TAFE training resource available for our industry. So it makes sense to include it as part of our already comprehensive library of technical manuals and guides. The ARAC Manual will doubtless continue to help improve the industry’s skills and capability into the future.”

The revised fifth edition of the ARAC Manual reflects the industry’s increased focus on efficiency and sustainability, as well as including updates on technologies.

“With refrigeration and air conditioning so widely integrated into our lives, it would be unthinkable to significantly reduce – let alone remove – society’s reliance on it,” says Boyle, the Manual’s author, and a long-time AIRAH member of influence. “So, the industry has no option but to seek greater efficiency and overall sustainability. Sustainability has become a key measure in so many things society does, and our industry must reflect this concern in the way we go about our work.”

Volume 1 provides an in-depth coverage of industry basics in terms of principles and equipment. According to Boyle, the requirement for technicians and the designers to apply these basic HVAC&R principles to achieve a more efficient and sustainable outcome has never been greater.

In Volume 2, the factors that affect the efficient operation of refrigeration and air conditioning plant and equipment are investigated. This covers the explanation of the pressure-enthalpy diagram and psychrometric chart as key diagnostic tools to help maintain peak efficiency. It also explains service and maintenance techniques, as well as heat-load calculations and the selection of equipment based on those calculations.

Also included is an overview of air conditioning systems, and a detailed look at piping design.

“With its focus on sustainability and energy efficiency – as well being a powerful educational tool – taking ownership of the ARAC Manual aligns well with AIRAH’s own strategic aims and focus areas,” says AIRAH executive manager of government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH. “We are delighted to bring one of Australia’s foremost resources for training in the refrigeration and air conditioning industry into the AIRAH fold.”

The fifth edition of the Australian Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning (ARAC) Manual is available for purchase at www.airah.org.au/ARAC

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Phil Wilkinson awarded prestigious environmental sustainability accolade

AIRAH ‎executive manager – government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH, has earned the 2016 Bob Brown Foundation Deni Greene Award. 

The award is presented annually to an Australian who has made a significant contribution in one or more of the following categories: sustainability, ethical investment, energy, environmental and social responsibility, and environmental communication. These contributions may have been made in Australia or overseas. 

“I’d like to congratulate Phil on his well-deserved recognition from the Bob Brown Foundation honouring his work around energy efficiency and sustainability,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH, who accepted the award on Wilkinson’s behalf. “Phil been a champion of the HVAC&R industry for many years, and his zest, tenacity and collaborative approach have been tremendously effective.”   

Over the past 14 years, Wilkinson has worked for AIRAH in a variety of high-profile roles, including his current position as executive manager – government relations and technical services. Each role has enabled him to apply his enthusiasm and expertise to a raft of sustainability-related projects. Whether it’s through his work on best-practice guides, magazine articles, conferences or workshops, Wilkinson has been a tireless champion of sustainability and energy efficiency within HVAC&R. 

Wilkinson represents AIRAH on several high-profile sustainability-related committees and bodies within the built environment industry, including NABERS, The Melbourne Forum and ASBEC.

A key achievement in the past year has been the launch of the first project falling under the PRIME initiative, the HVAC&R industry’s collaborative approach to a low-emissions future that Wilkinson championed to get off the ground.

“It was such a pleasant surprise when I took the call telling me I’d won the award,” says the UK-born Wilkinson. “The Deni Greene Award has been won by some of the country’s leading sustainability advocates, so I’m honoured to be recognised in the same illustrious company. The award is testament to the fine work done by AIRAH to promote safe, sustainable, healthy and comfortable built environments – something I am passionate about.”

The Deni Greene Award was inaugurated to recognise the many contributions that Greene made to sustainability during her time in Australia. It has been established through the initiative and financial support of a group of Greene’s friends and colleagues. 

Past winners of the plaudit include 350.org Australia campaigns director Charlie Wood; energy efficiency pioneer Alan Pears AM; and leading sustainable architecture academic Dominique Hes, M.AIRAH.  

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AIRAH Awards finalists announced

After considerable deliberation from the judging panel, the finalists of the 2016 AIRAH Awards have been selected.

The impressively high standard of nominations presented the judges with the difficult task of selecting the best of the best – the finalists – for the AIRAH Awards 2016. 

“The projects and individuals selected as finalists for the AIRAH Awards in 2016 continued the astonishing standard associated with HVAC&R’s most prestigious awards,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH. “They’ve set a high bar for excellence, leadership, and performance in our industry.”

Winners of the AIRAH Awards 2016 will be announced at a presentation dinner held at Luna Park in Sydney on November 10.

FINALISTS

The AIRAH Future Leader Award remains one of the Institute’s most hotly contested categories, with the industry’s brightest emerging leaders competing for the bauble. This year’s finalists are Jesse Clarke, M.AIRAH, from CSR (NSW); Carlos Flores, M.AIRAH, from the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (NSW); Amnon Holland, M.AIRAH, from ESBS (ACT); Jeremy Osborne, M.AIRAH, EnergyAE (NSW); Brett Saunders, Affil.AIRAH, Hiflow Industries (Qld), and Leon Wurfel, Affil.AIRAH, from Bueno (NSW).

The Student of the Year Award recognises outstanding students, at any level, in the HVAC&R industry. This year’s finalists are Aaron Hoare, Stud.AIRAH, from A.G. Coombs (Vic); Michael Snook, Affil.AIRAH, from Centigrade (WA); and Xiaolin Wang, Stud.AIRAH, from the Australian National University (ACT).

AIRAH’s Award for Excellence in Innovation honours the outstanding improvements in Australian HVAC&R achieved through innovation. Finalists for 2016 are Lendlease for its work on Barangaroo South District Cooling Plant; Lommers Engineering for its High-Performance Cluster Cooling Systems Solution; The Frame Group’s Sydney Data Centre Modernisation Project: and NDY for its efforts on the Australian Federal Police Forensics Facility at Majura (ACT).

The Product of the Year Award, now in its second year, sees five finalists competing for the coveted gong. The finalists are PoolPac Plus from AirChange, the Omni BEMS Controller from Innotech, the X-Operative TAB from Fast Works, the Eco HWP from Temperzone, and Hux Connect from Hux.

Finalists in the Best HVAC&R Retrofit or Upgrade category sees Cundall’s Burwood Campus Thermal Upgrade competing against IrwinConsult’s work on the Glaxo SmithKline Blow Fill Seal Facility, NDY’s work on the Westpac Kogarah Refurbishment, the work by Refrigeration Innovations on the IGA Boccaccio Cellars, and Westside Group for the UniSA Playford and Bonython Jubilee.

Recognising Australian initiatives that have improved the sustainability of HVAC&R systems or the industry, AIRAH’s Award for Excellence in Sustainability celebrates a crucial area of HVAC&R. Finalists for 2016 are City Holdings for Coles Coburg North; Floth for 69 Robertson St, Fortitude Valley; Steensen Varming for the Warship Pavilion, Australian National Maritime Museum; and Umow Lai for the School of Design, University of Melbourne.

The WR Ahern Award is awarded to the best technical paper by an AIRAH member published in Ecolibrium over the previous year. Six papers are in contention this year.

The AIRAH Awards 2016 sponsors are Mitsubishi Electric (event sponsor), A.G. Coombs (Future Leader), NABERS (Excellence in Sustainability), Standards Australia (Excellence in Innovation), Grosvenor Engineering Group (Student of the Year), ActronAir (dinner sponsor), and Daikin (after-dinner speaker sponsor).
 
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Record-breaking attendance at AIRAH’s The Future of HVAC 2016 Conference

Held last week in Brisbane, The Future of HVAC 2016 Conference showcased a stellar line-up of speakers, and provided a raft of provocative ideas.   

Now established as an annual gathering place for the HVAC industry’s enquiring minds and trendsetters, the two-day conference highlighted the industry’s shift towards a zero-energy future, and the need to embrace bleeding-edge design. 

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH, says The Future of HVAC reflects AIRAH’s commitment to help shape an efficient, productive and resilient industry.  

“The Future of HVAC continues to grow and improve every year, and 2016 was no exception,” Gleeson says. “The program addressed issues of critical importance to all HVAC&R industry professionals – everything from climate change to the latest in cloud technology.”
Held at the Queensland Institute of Technology, the two-day event drew a record 145 delegates from across Australia and globally. 

Both days’ keynote speakers delivered stirring addresses. Queensland Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection Dr Steven Miles reminded those present that the HVAC&R industry has a responsibility to assist in the transition to renewable energy sources, a notion that proved to be one of the conference’s motifs. 

Indeed, QUT’s David Hood AO also passionately supported the need for renewable energy adoption. In presenting a series of damning statistics and graphs, the day two keynote outlined the dire consequences should present trends continue. He also condemned those denying the effects of climate change, including a number of Queensland politicians.

Yet climate change and renewables were but two subjects covered in a considerably eclectic program that also featured sessions on low-pressure VAV diffusion design, making buildings more resilient, the art of schematic design-load calculations, the importance of indoor environment quality, and the future of NABERS.

In a presentation that encapsulated the spirit and intention of the conference, Atelier Ten’s Paul Stoller, M.AIRAH, explored some of the ways that algae systems can contribute to a more sustainable, low-carbon built environment, and the challenges facing technology adoption. At the centre of the talk was Hamburg’s incredible BIQ building – an edifice unveiled in 2013 that is powered by algae. 

AIRAH members Leon Wurfel, Steven Luxford and Matthew Sullivan participated in a panel session on automated fault diagnosis. The trio demonstrated how the latest technology is completely changing the way buildings can be optimised.    

In an open workshop session led by conference chair Paul Bannister, M.AIRAH, a number of questions were posed to delegates, including, “What will the zero-energy HVAC of the future look like?” Another was, “What support, changes, or transformations are needed for us to get there?”

The group discussion went hand-in-hand with the conference’s final presentation by Dr Stephen White, F.AIRAH, who discussed the CSIRO Zero Energy Innovation Challenge – a key PRIME project – and coordinated an audience feedback session. 

“A shared view of where we are going will make it easier to overcome incumbency issues,” says White in advocating a different HVAC system-integration approach. “It will also enable us to work with government on transition pathways.”

AIRAH thanks gold sponsor ActronAir; silver sponsor Innotech; and bronze sponsors A.G. Coombs and Fantech for their support. 

The Future of HVAC 2017 Conference is slated to be held in Sydney. 

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PRIME time for some HVAC&R action!

After some considerable work pulling everything together, the first project falling under the PRIME initiative has been approved. PRIME is designed to be a whole-of-industry pathway to a low-emissions future.

The project in question is a National Construction Code (NCC) whole-of-building commissioning proposal. The aim is to develop an industry-agreed proposal for change (PFC) to provide an industry-endorsed commissioning process into the NCC Volume One.

“Commissioning is such an important component of helping to make the built environment more energy efficient,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. 

“Unfortunately, despite being critical to the efficient operation of HVAC&R equipment – and therefore of buildings and the built environment itself – it is often neglected, done shoddily, or completely ignored. Introducing a minimum standardised approach to commissioning into the NCC will ensure this is far less likely to occur.”

AIRAH is providing the resources to run this PRIME project. A small PRIME working group of technical experts from AIRAH, AMCA, CIBSE and NEBB has been formed, and there is close dialogue with the Australian Building Codes Board and individual state and territory building administrations. 

“While there is significant support for a commissioning process specification from the construction industry and property sector, there are a number of administrative issues and regulatory challenges that need to be worked through,” says AIRAH technical manager Vince Aherne, M.AIRAH. “That’s why the whole-of-industry approach that PRIME can offer is so critical to this project”.

PRIME is the HVAC&R industry’s blueprint for a successful transition to a low-emissions future through Professionalism, Regulation, Information, Measurement, and Emission abatement. PRIME was re-energised earlier this year following AIRAH board approval to fund a PRIME secretariat.

“The PRIME bus has left the depot,” says AIRAH executive manager – external relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH. “We have a workable coalition of industry stakeholders, a model to work under, our first PRIME project approved, a second one submitted for review, and three or four others in the pipeline. Hold on for the ride.”
 
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AIRAH’s Humidity Workshop 2016 engages and enlightens

 
Delegates from across the country descended on The Mint in Sydney to participate in AIRAH’s inaugural Humidity Issues in Australian Climates Workshop 2016 last week. Featuring a comprehensive line-up of speakers, the Workshop provided those in attendance with an excellent insight into what is a wide-ranging and often misunderstood topic. 

The one-day Workshop program covered an array of subject areas concerned with designing HVAC systems for humid conditions, including fundamentals of mechanical design, humidity issues in all climates, mechanical design and building envelope design, occupant health, and case studies. 

“The Workshop was a bona fide success,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. “There was robust technical information presented in a user-friendly manner for our members and the wider HVAC&R industry. It’s what AIRAH does well, and fits in with our aim to grow industry skills and capability for the future.” 

The feedback from delegates was similarly positive.

“The Workshop was excellent,” one delegate says. “One of the best AIRAH has presented in my opinion.”

After AIRAH board director Nathan Groenhout, F.AIRAH, welcomed delegates, Workshop chair Rob Lord, M.AIRAH; Mike Palmer, F.AIRAH; Ben Cox, M.AIRAH; Ian Harwood, M.AIRAH; and Mark Heath took to the stage for a panel session titled, “The facts speak for themselves”. A broad sweep of subjects such as health, energy efficiency, and restoration after water damage were covered.

Cox and Palmer served on the conference committee with Lord.

The morning and post-lunch sessions featured presentations from a contingent from the University of Tasmania: Dr Mark Dewsbury, App.AIRAH; Dr Tim Law, Affil.AIRAH; and Johann Potgieter. 

Providing an international regulatory perspective, Dr Dewsbury and Potgieter discussed the developments in built-fabric regulation that have occurred in New Zealand, the US, OK, and the EU. 

Dr Law offered a more localised viewpoint, discussing recent experiences of mould and condensation in new houses and commercial buildings in Tasmania, which is not usually associated with humidity issues. 

“The Tasmanian contingent provided really top-notch insight,” says Lord. “The trio presented live building research, and also compared Australia's progress with other countries in the area of condensation – it was a definite highlight of the day. I also found the introduction to health by Ben Cox good stuff. However, the sweetener was to catch up with interstate AIRAH mates who still have tips to share.” 

Closing out the day, Peter Barry, M. AIRAH, from BHP Billiton Iron Ore Projects presented case studies from Port Hedland. Barry addressed the difficulties experienced due to high ambient humidity in this remote region of Western Australia, and the measures used to rectify these issues. 

Lord says that despite recent efforts the subject of humidity is not very well understood, and is worthy of greater scrutiny. 

“In Australia, we have a lot to do to get on top of this topic,” he says.  “It is broad, and it is confused at the NCC level. And, although DA20 is a good start, there is not a high level of understanding in the broader industry.”

Workshop delegates received a complimentary copy of the newly released 2016 version of DA 20: Humid Tropical Air Conditioning, a must-have resource for those designing HVAC systems for tropical humid conditions.

“There was a deep level of engagement, even though the topics were very broad and across many climate zones,” says Lord about the Workshop. “The conversations were quite animated. There was real comradery in the room, and almost everyone stayed to the final presentation.”

The next scheduled conference on the AIRAH calendar is The Future of HVAC Conference 2016, slated to be held in Brisbane at Queensland University of Technology Gardens Point Campus, from September 7–8.

For more information about AIRAH’s coming conferences, go to www.airah.org.au/Conferences

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AIRAH names prominent keynotes to headline the 2016 Future of HVAC conference

Queensland Environment Minister Dr Steven Miles and Professor David Hood AM will feature at AIRAH’s marquee conference, The Future of HVAC 2016, as keynote speakers.   

Held at the Queensland University of Technology’s Gardens Point campus in Brisbane from September 7–8, The Future of HVAC 2016 Conference will explore advances in the design process, HVAC and smart grids, net-zero buildings, and Big Data, among several other topics. 

“It’s a real coup for AIRAH to have speakers the calibre of Professor Hood and Minister Miles to join an already impressive conference line-up,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. 

“David brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the table. Having been involved with industry and professional associations promoting the improved energy performance of buildings, he is influencing change in Australia’s ‘energy culture’. It will be fascinating to hear his thoughts on climate change as it relates to our industry.” 

Dr Miles is the Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection, and Minister for National Parks and the Great Barrier Reef. Since becoming a minister in 2015, his achievements include developing a climate-adaptation strategy for Queensland.

As part of his keenly anticipated keynote presentation, Hood will provide an in-depth overview of the effects of climate change on the HVAC&R industry, and what needs to be accomplished to ameliorate its effects. 

“Do you really understand climate change and the risks that society is facing if we continue on with ‘business as usual’? I have studied the science and analysed the risks of inaction on climate change – it is not a pretty picture,” Hood says.

“In regards of the HVAC&R industry, the missing factor in the current situation is leadership. I believe that the nation's engineers are up to the task; we accept the science, we can build awareness and mobilise the community, and we deliver the solutions.” 

As a Chartered Professional Engineer boasting 40 years of experience, Hood has worked in business, engineering, education, project management, and senior executive positions in both the public and private sectors. 

Hood was made a Member of the Order of Australia on Australia Day 2013 in recognition of his contribution to engineering through industry associations, as well as his efforts to raise community awareness of sustainability. 

The Future of HVAC 2016 Conference aligns with AIRAH’s commitment to better the HVAC&R industry. 

“AIRAH is the industry’s leading independent voice on resilience, sustainability, compliance, innovation, and the transition to low-GWP refrigerants,” Gleeson says. “So, The Future of HVAC 2016 Conference is right in our wheelhouse.”  

Other topics covered at the conference include good schematic design-load calculations and why it’s becoming a lost art; a calibrated simulation case study for an office building in Canberra; HVAC for the future – making building services more resilient; utilisation of cloud technologies to augment facilities and asset management; the benefits of low-pressure VAV diffusion design; NABERS and what’s next; regulating the HVAC industry; Australian indoor environment rating tools and the future of building health, wellbeing and productivity; and living algae buildings. 

For more information, and to view the full line-up of speakers, go to www.airah.org.au/TheFutureofHVAC

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AIRAH releases 2016 edition of DA20 – its bestselling technical application manual

The Australian Institute of Refrigeration Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) has updated its bestselling Design Application manual, DA20 Humid Tropical Air Conditioning. 

Available now, the third edition of DA20 Humid Tropical Air Conditioning provides a holistic approach to design in hot, humid tropical climates. It is the most comprehensive technical resource available for Australian air conditioning, cooling and comfort in these regions.

“The primary purpose of DA20 is to standardise and promote best-practice design, installation, and management of air conditioning and other comfort systems in hot, humid tropical climates,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH.

“DA20 will help to underpin the skills and update the knowledge of HVAC&R system designers, installers, operators, and maintainers, and improve the accessibility of best-practice design, installation and operating information for air conditioning in these challenging conditions.” 

A must-read reference, DA20 is essential reading for those involved in the design, selection, installation, commissioning, operation, maintenance and assessment of buildings or comfort systems in hot, humid tropical climatic regions.

“DA20 explores the topic of comfort in hot, tropical climates, starting with the very fundamentals of climate, thermal comfort and human response, before moving on to more advanced concepts such as adaptive comfort and hybrid-comfort cooling systems,” says DA20 editor Vince Aherne, M.AIRAH.

“The elements of a building design that affect indoor comfort are also explored, and the comfort systems that are typically applied are comprehensively explained.”

Aherne says air conditioning receives particular and detailed attention in DA20, with far-reaching information on equipment selection and application, system design strategies, system controls, and detailed design notes all included.   

The 2016 version of DA20, updated for the first time since the 1990s, signifies the Institute’s commitment to providing essential information the industry requires. 

“AIRAH prides itself on its technical resources and access to knowledge,” Gleeson says. “We are, after all, a technical institute, and publications such as DA20 are our bread and butter. 

“Our comprehensive library of DA manuals is an example of our commitment to developing an efficient, productive and resilient industry. And as part of our drive to grow industry skills and capability for the future, our entire suite of DA manuals will go through a regular process of review and updating.”

In a special offer, delegates at next week’s Humidity Issues in Australian Climates Workshop 2016 in Sydney on August 3 receive a complimentary copy of DA20.

To order a copy of DA20, or any of AIRAH’s technical manuals, go to www.airah.org.au/DAmanuals

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Providing clarity on humidity in Australia

 
AIRAH’s newest one-day event, the Humidity Issues in Australian Climates Workshop 2016, takes place at The Mint in Sydney on August 3. 

The Workshop has been put together with mechanical design engineers and mechanical contractors in mind. Yet there are substantial benefits for others in the construction industry, including architects and builders, to attend. The Workshop will cover both the residential and non-residential sectors.

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH, says hosting the Workshop aligns with AIRAH’s desire to be the leading independent voice for the HVAC&R industry on innovation, sustainability, compliance and resilience. 

“The Institute is always looking for ways to grow industry skills and capability for the future,” Gleeson says. “Hosting the inaugural Humidity Issues in Australian Climates Workshop certainly fits in this remit.”
 
The effect of high ambient humidity can be overlooked or poorly understood by mechanical engineers. According to Workshop committee member Ben Cox, M.AIRAH, the Workshop provides a perfect platform to address such issues. 

“This Workshop is being held to encourage knowledge sharing between fellow professionals, as well as to update everyone on best-practice technology, design standards, and obtaining experience from people in the field,” Cox says. 

Speakers will cover everything from case studies to focused technical presentations. The speaker line-up includes BHP Billiton’s Peter Barry, M.AIRAH; CAREL’s George Strohmeier, M.AIRAH; and SEED Engineering’s Rob Lord, M.AIRAH. 

Strohmeier will discuss adiabatic humidification, providing a practical overview.

Barry says that humidity on the northern coast of Western Australia has always provided a challenge for iron-ore extraction projections based there.  

“The effects of high ambient humidity have caused issues in many of these facilities, resulting in problems with mould, operator discomfort, condensation, and damage to building fabric and furniture,” he says. “These problems have arisen due to poor understanding of how to deal with high ambient humidity by system designers and architects, or failure to maintain adequate standards during construction.”

Lord will discuss how engineers can avoid and resolve humidity issues if they “role-play” the psychometric chart throughout the design process.  

“It is a weakness of computer simulation that the results are usually averaged, typically at discrete time-steps or locations, and without the ability to model a human response,” Lord says. “While a designer knows where condensation is desirable and where it must be avoided, this ‘role-play’ can become more complicated when approaching a green project.”  

Like the others in the 2016 line-up, Lord’s presentation will provide practical information for those looking to get up to speed with Australian humidity issues. 

Lord and Cox are part of the Workshop committee, alongside fellow AIRAH members Mike Palmer, F.AIRAH, and Cameron Chick, M.AIRAH.

For more information, and to register for the Humidity Issues in Australian Climates Workshop 2016, go to www.airah.org.au//Humidity2016

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AIRAH calls for a strategic approach for Australian cities and communities


The Australian Institute of Refrigeration Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) is calling for a considered approach to planning for Australia, its cities and communities to guide politicians in the lead-up to Saturday’s Federal Election.

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson says it’s important for politicians from all parties to understand both the vital role the HVAC&R industry has in our economy, but also the part it can play in helping Australia achieve its environmental aspirations.

“As a signatory to the Paris Climate Change Agreement, Australia has now committed to the global transition to net-zero emissions, and to reaching net-zero emissions nationally around 2050,” says Gleeson, who has written to federal and state politicians about his concerns ahead of the election.

“Policy makers should understand the Australian built environment sector – and within that, the HVAC&R industry – can make a major contribution to meeting this goal, as well as improving energy productivity, supporting innovation, and creating healthier, more liveable cities. We believe that in order to maximise emissions reductions from the built environment and help Australia reach its Paris Agreement obligations, an ambitious coordinated national plan is required.”

Gleeson says AIRAH members can play a huge part in this transformation. Though working in a largely “hidden industry”, he says AIRAH members are part of a sector that includes more than 170,000 Australians. Their work impacts everything from keeping our food fresh, to the design and maintenance of high-performing buildings.

“The Institute has been intimately involved with the development of ASBEC’s Low Carbon High Performance report, and we support its recommendations,” Gleeson says. “And AIRAH is in fact the driving force behind PRIME, the HVAC&R industry’s blueprint for a successful transition to a low-emissions future through Professionalism, Regulation, Information, Measurement and Emission abatement.

AIRAH’s recommendations
  • As part of the establishment of a national plan to coordinate policy development and implementation, AIRAH is calling for a focus on:
  • Strong minimum standards
  • Targeted incentives 
  • Embrace of innovation through better data and smart technology.
Strong minimum standards

AIRAH’s recommendation is for the review and lifting of minimum energy performance requirements for key standards, including the National Construction Code (NCC), and for the implementation of a trajectory for future benchmark increases. The Institute would also like to see the introduction of cost-effective minimum energy performance standards for existing buildings to supplement measures outlined in the National Energy Productivity Plan (NEPP). The recommendation in this area strongly aligns with AIRAH’s position and continuing efforts regarding HVAC&R compliance.

“Because HVAC&R is responsible for 24 per cent of the electricity used in Australian buildings and about 11 per cent of the total Australian national emissions, building sustainability cannot be addressed without addressing HVAC&R sustainability,” says AIRAH’s executive manager of external relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH.

Targeted incentives

AIRAH sees great value in the introduction of green depreciation to accelerate uptake of energy upgrades to existing commercial buildings at the time of refurbishment. The Institute would also like to see the setting of ambitious targets for higher performance in government-owned and occupied buildings, and for government procurement.

“Tool development is important for HVAC&R optimisation, and AIRAH has played a role here through the development of Calculating Cool, an online HVAC rating tool,” Wilkinson says. “This work should continue, and there is considerable potential to improve the existing building stock’s performance through tuning, including recommissioning and energy-efficiency upgrades.”

Innovation

“Innovation is part of AIRAH’s DNA,” Gleeson says. “As such, we recommend unlocking access to energy, and driving innovation to achieve large-scale improvements in energy performance across the building sector. We see access to information, training and education as key in Australia’s journey towards net-zero emissions buildings, and to innovation. As such, AIRAH supports the transition to next-generation low-GWP refrigerants, and research into new technologies.

“AIRAH considers the commitment to fund smart, sustainable cities as a most positive step. We applaud the promise of $100 million for a Sustainable Cities Investment Fund, to be delivered through the Clean Energy Finance Corporation,” Gleeson says. “And we are pleased to see funds could be invested in a range of projects, including green buildings, retrofit projects, and precinct-scale energy-generation systems. 

“We see these initiatives as aligned with our own strategic commitment towards resilience, sustainability, compliance, innovation, and the transition to next-generation refrigerants.”

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AIRAH gives a thumbs-up to announcement of HFC phase-down

The Australian Institute of Refrigeration Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) applauds Monday’s announcement from Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt of the impending phase-down of HFC refrigerants, which are known for their high global warming potential (GWP).

The government announced a domestic phase-down schedule of an 85 per cent reduction of HFC emissions by 2036 via a statutory phase-down of HFC imports over a 20-year timeline.

“AIRAH applauds the announcement of an HFC phase-down,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. “Not only is such a measure pivotal to national and international efforts to reduce CO2-equivalent emissions in the face of climate change, it provides some certainty to those in the HVAC&R industry, who can now plan for and invest in new technology that will be required.

“In taking this path Australia will be a world leader in reducing HFC emissions, joining the US, the European Union and Japan in adopting early action to reduce HFC emissions. And AIRAH has been a key part of this process. Indeed, we have been a major supporter of the phase-down and its environmental benefits. 

“We see the HFC phase-down as completely congruent with our strategic themes of HVAC&R sustainability, compliance, innovation and research, and the need to transition to next-generation refrigerants.”

Enabling provisions for future bans on the import of new equipment containing high-GWP HFCs will be included as part of new legislation. Equipment such as domestic and automotive air conditioners containing high-GWP refrigerants will be considered in the future. The government says this decision will be based on an assessment of the Australian market, and particularly on the availability of alternative equipment.

During Mr Hunt’s announcement, which was made at the Box Hill Institute’s Integrated Technology Hub in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs, he praised the collaborative nature of Australia’s HVAC&R industry, and its critical role in leading the world to a low-emissions future.

“Those engaged in heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration – this is the stuff of life,” Hunt says. “Yours is an industry that has been proactive in helping to reduce emissions and global warming potential. It’s truly a case of local actions having global implications.”

The government will introduce legislative amendments to implement new measures as soon as possible, with all initiatives to begin by January 2018. 

Some measures can be implemented more quickly through regulation amendments, such as changes to the low-volume import exemptions, and business and technician licences.

AIRAH’s Phil Wilkinson, F. AIRAH, says the government announcement aligns with the Institute’s championing of PRIME, an initiative from a coalition of stakeholders in the Australian HVAC&R industry to deliver pathways to a low-emissions future.
Wilkinson says it is also encouraging to see a focus on energy efficiency – a focus area for AIRAH – in the announcement.

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AIRAH supports lowering of CBD threshold

The Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) welcomes the announcement from Minister for Resources, Energy and Northern Australia Josh Frydenberg around reducing emissions in the built environment.

The government will lower the threshold of the Commercial Building Disclosure (CBD) Program from 2,000 to 1,000 sq m, which will see an additional 1,000 commercial buildings disclose their energy efficiency when they sell or lease their properties. The government says this will help inform purchasers and tenants of building energy costs, deliver more than $50 million in energy savings, and around 3.5 million tonnes of emission reductions over five years. This change will commence July 1 next year. 

“AIRAH and its members have played significant roles in CBD – from the initial research undertaken, policy and regulatory design and continuing support of the program, including consultation on this latest change,” says AIRAH CEO, Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. 

“HVAC&R systems contribute up to 60 per cent of a building’s emissions, so it’s critical that a trusted voice is at the table to put the industry position forward in addressing how these emissions can be reduced. CBD deals with building emissions issues in a non-prescriptive way, helping prospective tenants address the information gap around the type of asset they are considering.”

AIRAH executive manager – government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F. AIRAH, says that since its inception in 2010, the CBD has delivered positive outcomes through encouraging the behaviour change of building owners. 

“Now is the time to start casting the net further, addressing more buildings,” Wilkinson says. “We are also starting to see the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science and the Department of Environment work more closely together, which is a positive sign – and one that was flagged in the PRIME Strategy.”

PRIME is the HVAC&R industry’s blueprint for a successful transition to a low-emissions future through professionalism, regulation, information, measurement, and emission abatement.

“As the leading independent voice for the HVAC&R industry on resilience, sustainability, compliance, innovation, and the transition to low-GWP refrigerants, AIRAH sees the changes to CBD as congruent with our strategic focus,” Gleeson says. “Reducing greenhouse gas emissions can only be a good thing.”

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AIRAH forms Resilience Special Technical Group

AIRAH’s commitment to channel specialist technical knowledge from niche areas back into the Institute continues with the unveiling of its newest Special Technical Group (STG), which focuses on resilience. 

The Resilience STG joins others dedicated to ESD, solar cooling, backflow prevention, and refrigeration.   

“The Resilient Design Institute defines resilience as the capacity to adapt to changing conditions and to maintain or regain functionality and vitality in the face of stress or disturbance,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. “It is the capacity to bounce back after a disturbance or interruption of some sort, especially extreme weather events.

“AIRAH aims to be the leading independent voice for the industry on resilience, sustainability, compliance, innovation and the transition to low-GWP refrigerants. The formation of the Resilience STG fits right in with our strategic focus in this area.”

The AIRAH Resilience Special Technical Group aims to increase awareness of resilience as a design principle, gather knowledge of resilient design approaches, generate resilient design tools and strategies, and fill in resilience knowledge gaps specific to the HVAC&R industry. 

“We live in a world of extreme weather events such as bushfires, cyclones, floods and heatwaves,” says Paul Stoller, M.AIRAH, who is co-chair of AIRAH’s Resilience STG. “There are chronic stresses such as temperature rise and more extreme weather. Then there are the possible stresses such as urbanisation, energy costs and risk management. A means of dealing with all this is resilience.” 

AIRAH’s newest STG kicked off with a workshop earlier this year. Participants from a number of industry sectors gathered to envision a more resilient future, pinpointed some of the challenges stifling a more resilient built environment, and identified knowledge gaps and technical shortcomings. 

AIRAH executive manager – government relations and technical services Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH, oversees the Institute’s STGs. 

“The STGs represent a fantastic resource for AIRAH,” Wilkinson says. “They contain an incredible wealth of knowledge that simply needs to be tapped. As part of my technical remit, I’ll be working closely with the Resilience STG to harness the information and considerable talent of those involved.” 

These AIRAH members make up the Resilience STG committee:
  • Paul Stoller, M.AIRAH (Co-chair)
  • Liza Taylor, M.AIRAH (Co-chair)
  • Nicki Parker, Affil.AIRAH
  • Nick Asha, M.AIRAH.
For more information about AIRAH’s STGs, or to get involved, go to www.airah.org.au/STG

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Nominations open for 2016 AIRAH Awards

AIRAH is seeking nominations for its coveted annual accolades, which acknowledge the HVAC&R industry’s outstanding achievements. 

The Institute’s night of nights – the AIRAH Awards 2016 – will take place November 10, and will be held at Sydney’s Luna Park for the second year running. The presentation dinner honours the industry’s high achievers, stand-out projects, and ground-breaking research. 

“The HVAC&R industry is full of passionate, hard-working people striving to make a difference,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. “Our industry is ubiquitous, playing a vital role in everything from agriculture to high-performing buildings. The AIRAH Awards are an opportunity to acknowledge and praise those who are leading the pack – the most outstanding achievements.” 

Open to individuals, companies, corporate bodies, institutions and government authorities, the 2016 AIRAH Awards recognise work carried out during 2015. 

Media personality and author Gretel Killeen will return to MC the event.

Social entrepreneur, business advocate and anchor host of TV show Smart Money Jon Dee will be the after-dinner speaker.

The 2016 AIRAH Awards encompass the following categories:

  • James Harrison Medal: the highest honour AIRAH can bestow upon an individual (nominations not required); 
  • Future Leader award: recognising emerging leaders in any facet of the HVAC&R industry; 
  • Student of the Year award: recognising outstanding scholarship at any level in the HVAC&R industry;
  • Product of the Year: manufacturers of the best Australian HVAC&R products compete against each other for a coveted AIRAH gong;
  • Best HVAC&R Retrofit or Upgrade award: recognising excellence in the retrofit or upgrade of an HVAC&R system, and can address the complete delivery of projects; 
  • Denis Joseph Award for Innovative Use of Solar Energy in HVAC&R: recognising Australian initiatives that through the innovative use of solar energy significantly improve the performance of HVAC&R systems; 
  • Excellence in Sustainability award: recognising Australian initiatives that have made clear improvements in the sustainability of HVAC&R systems or the HVAC&R industry; 
  • Excellence in Innovation award: recognising substantial Australian improvements in the areas of HVAC&R achieved through innovation. 
  • This can include new or significantly enhanced products; or new or significantly improved systems, plant and equipment, or processes; 
  • Excellence in HVAC&R Research: recognising outstanding achievements in Australian research; and
  • The W.R. Ahern Award: awarded annually and recognises the best technical paper by an AIRAH member published in Ecolibrium in the preceding year. Nominations are not required in this category.

2016 AIRAH Awards key dates

Nominations open* Monday, May 30
Nominations close Monday, July 25 
2016 AIRAH Awards Presentation Dinner on Thursday, November 10
* Please contact Alison Mattes via alison@airah.org.au to advise that you will be nominating.


2016 AIRAH Awards presentation dinner

What:  AIRAH Awards Presentation Dinner 2016
When: Thursday, November 10, 7pm
Where: Crystal Palace, Luna Park, Sydney
Cost: Ticket: $170; table of 10: $1,650
Dress: Black tie
For nomination forms, go to www.airahawards.org.au
To book a table email alison@airah.org.au


Awards sponsors
 
Event sponsor – Mitsubishi Electric
Dinner sponsor – ActronAir
After-dinner speaker sponsor – Daikin
Future Leader Award – A.G. Coombs
Excellence in Innovation – Standards Australia
Excellence in Sustainability – NABERS

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Ania Hampton named new AIRAH president

Ania Hampton, M.AIRAH, has been named the first female president in the storied 95-year history of the Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH).

Hampton was unanimously elected president by her fellow directors at the recent AIRAH board meeting. She takes over from Nathan Groenhout, F.AIRAH, who served three years in the national leadership role. 

“Ania is an experienced professional with HVAC in the genes as a second-generation building services engineer,” Groenhout says.

“While she will put her own unique stamp on the role – like all of us before her – I know that she will continue to enhance our member value. I believe she has a great strength in connecting to people across our membership, and will shape a future-focused Institute that delivers real value to members.”

Hampton, who is the director of Edefice, her own engineering practice, plans to lead a collaborative and consultative board and to engage with AIRAH members. 

“I want people to be as passionate about AIRAH and HVAC&R as I am, and be engaged and excited about what we’re doing,” Hampton says. “I want our members to be recognised in the industry as leaders and technical experts, and for the wider public to value our profession and contribution to their everyday lives. 

“I want to be remembered for my enthusiasm and ability to get stuff done. At the end of my tenure, I’d like AIRAH to be regarded as a vibrant, diverse and contemporary organisation leading our industry.”
Education, training, and engaging with the HVAC&R leaders of tomorrow are issues of importance for Hampton. 

“I would like to see AIRAH and its members engage with students at both tertiary and secondary level and inspire them with the terrific and vital work that we do,” she says. “The PRIME initiative is a wonderful opportunity for our industry to work together to deliver real emissions-reduction outcomes, and I’m thrilled that AIRAH will continue to drive this forward. 

“Improving our member services and diversity is a big priority, and the launch of the Women in HVAC&R committee is just the first step. It’s an exciting time to be part of AIRAH and I’m delighted to be president.”

Groenhout leaves the post after three years at the helm.

“I have taken the Institute through a period of substantial change,” he says. “With a year left on the board and a new CEO it was the right time to transition the leadership and allow others to take our organisation forward.”

Among the highlights of his stewardship, Groenhout lists the AIRAH Graduate Training Program coming to fruition, helping the organisation restructure and transition to a growth phase, and a focus on diversity and membership.

“Being succeeded by a woman under 40,” Groenhout says, “is a great realisation of the vision to make AIRAH relevant to the whole industry.”

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AIRAH’s Future of HVAC 2016 conference calls for abstracts

AIRAH’s most popular conference series, The Future of HVAC, is gearing up for the 2016 version of the event. The conference committee is now calling for abstracts for this two-day exploration of the industry’s present and future. 

Held at the Queensland University of Technology’s Gardens Point campus in Brisbane from September 7–8, The Future of HVAC 2016 Conference will explore advances in the design process, HVAC and smart grids, net-zero buildings, and Big Data, among other topics. 

“There is so much going on in the HVAC industry right now,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH. “The Future of HVAC Conference 2016 presents a unique opportunity for our industry’s leading thinkers to collectively discuss and deconstruct the most important issues, technologies and ideas we are all confronting.” 

It’s a sentiment with which committee member Paul Bannister, M.AIRAH, agrees.

“We are in a time of rapid change in the HVAC industry,” he says. “This conference is one of the few opportunities HVAC professionals have to hear about what is happening at the leading and bleeding edge to make sure that they stay up to date.”

The Future of HVAC Conference committee is calling for 200–300 word abstracts. Topics for abstracts can include but are not limited to:

Advances in the design process
  • BIM
  • Building simulation
Heading towards net-zero buildings
  • How HVAC should be managed in the future
  • The impact of advanced façade designs on HVAC
  • Overseas trends
Big Data
  • Analysis techniques
  • How to get the most out of data
Case studies (but not limited to)
  • Dehumidification
  • Commissioning
  • Innovative HVAC designs
Advances in HVAC design
  • Data centres
  • Advanced dehumidification design
  • Retail
HVAC and smart grids
  • HVAC in demand response
Energy retail perspectives.

“AIRAH is the industry’s leading independent voice on resilience, sustainability, compliance, innovation, and the transition to low-GWP refrigerants,” Gleeson says. “So The Future of HVAC 2016 Conference is right in our wheelhouse.”

Speakers selected to present full-length presentations at the conference will be required to submit a technical paper. Non-AIRAH members will be required to pay a speaker fee.

All submissions must also include a 100-word author biography and a high-resolution author photo. Abstracts should be sent to AIRAH conference organiser Emily McLaughlin by Tuesday, May 31. Email: conferences@airah.org.au
 
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AIRAH analyses and comments on the 2016–17 Federal Budget


Some wins for small business and cities, the potential for more work for HVAC&R professionals, but more could be done for climate change and to improve our resilience. 

That’s the verdict of AIRAH’s high brass on the 2016–17 Federal Budget released by Treasurer Scott Morrison on behalf of the Turnbull government last night.

AIRAH President Nathan Groenhout, M.AIRAH, says the government’s investment in cities is to be commended, as is its backing of clean energy.

“The $1 billion Clean Energy Innovation Fund to assist emerging clean energy technologies provides an essential investment of funds and greater certainty for the industry,” Groenhout says. “And it certainly fits in with AIRAH’s aim to build more resilience into our industry and into cities in general.  

“And we applaud the government’s decisions to retain the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), and to allocate $4.6 million to expand the Cities Taskforce. Yet AIRAH’s sustainability imperative means we would have liked to have seen new funding to assist Australia in its transition to a low-carbon economy – something the Institute sees as critically important, as exemplified by the PRIME initiative, which is a whole-of-industry strategy to reduce emissions.”

The government has cut the tax rate for small and medium businesses, from 28.5 per cent to 25 per cent, to be phased in over 10 years. 

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH, says businesses large and small have benefitted from the 2016–2017 Budget, with a suite of tax cuts to be implemented.

“This means all company tax rates in Australia will align at 25 per cent within a decade,” Gleeson says. “Within a few years Australia will match the average corporate tax rate for countries in the OECD.”

In the 2015–16 budget, small businesses with an annual turnover of $2m received a tax cut of 1.5 per cent. This year the government has increased the threshold to $10m, with the tax rate reducing from 28.5 per cent to 27.5 per cent, from July 1.

“In another win for small businesses, the threshold for eligibility for instant asset write-offs for equipment purchases of up to $20,000 has been increased from $2 million to $10 million annual turnover,” Gleeson says.

Gleeson says the $1,000 payment for businesses to employ interns could also help many within the HVAC&R industry, including AIRAH itself.

He says a lack of new funds for emissions-reduction initiatives was an area of disappointment in the 2016–2017 Budget. 

“AIRAH would have liked to have to have seen more funds allocated for climate change mitigation,” Gleeson says. “However, it’s pleasing to see the government acting to assist industry and to promote innovation. 

“This aligns with AIRAH’s areas of focus, in which we want to be the leading independent voice for our industry on resilience, sustainability, compliance, innovation, and the transition to low-GWP refrigerants.”

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AIRAH’s Humidity Workshop 2016 calls for speaker submissions


AIRAH’s newest one-day event, the Humidity Issues in Australian Climates Workshop 2016, is calling for speaker submissions. 

The workshop will take place at The Mint in Sydney on August 3. The workshop committee is now calling for abstracts.

AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, Affil.AIRAH, says hosting the Workshop aligns with AIRAH’s desire to be the leading independent voice for the HVAC&R industry on innovation, sustainability, compliance and resilience. 

“The Institute is always looking for ways to grow industry skills and capability for the future,” Gleeson says. “Hosting the inaugural Humidity Issues in Australian Climates Workshop certainly fits in this remit.”

Workshop committee member Ben Cox, M.AIRAH, says the effect of high ambient humidity can be overlooked or poorly understood by mechanical engineers.

“This workshop is being held to encourage knowledge sharing between fellow professionals, as well as to update everyone on best-practice technology, design standards, and obtaining experience from people in the field,” Cox says.

Abstract topics for submissions must be relevant to humidity issues in Australian climates, and may include, but are not limited to

Fundamentals of mechanical design 
  • Plant sizing for humidity
  • Design for part-load
  • Building pressurisation 
  • Outside air preconditioning 
  • Psychrometrics
  • Accuracy of weather data
Humidity issues in all climates
  • Condensation
  • Permanent/short-term
Mechanical design and building envelope design
  • Building fabric
  • Interstitial condensation
  • Cool room sweating
  • Ventilation vs de-humidification vs temperature differentials
Occupant health
  • Indoor air quality
  • Mould
  • Cleaning
Energy efficiency 
  • Without sacrificing comfort to humidity 
  • Design in a changing Australian climate
Case studies
  • Building humidity
  • Condensation damage 
  • Occupant health. 
  • Energy and air conditioning design 
  • Air quality. 

For those interested in speaking at the workshop, all submissions must include a 100-word author biography and a high-resolution author photo. Abstracts should be sent to the AIRAH conference organiser Emily McLaughlin by Wednesday, May 25.
Email: conferences@airah.org.au 

Non-AIRAH member speakers will be required to pay a speaker fee for presentations. 

Mechanical design engineers and mechanical contractors will benefit by attending the workshop. Architects and builders who need to understand the details and importance of vapour barriers and insulation in controlling humidity should also attend.
The workshop committee is comprised of Ben Cox, M.AIRAH; Mike Palmer, F.AIRAH; Cameron Chick, M.AIRAH; and Rob Lord, M.AIRAH.

For more information about the workshop, go to www.airah.org.au/conferences

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AIRAH’s inaugural Digitisation Workshop calls for abstracts


New for 2016, AIRAH’s inaugural Digitisation Workshop will look to address the hot-button topic of building information modelling (BIM) and explore its uptake in the Australian market.

Held on Friday, June 17 at City West Receptions in Perth, the AIRAH Digitisation Workshop signifies the Institute’s commitment to growing industry skills and improving the HVAC&R industry’s capability.  Essentially, BIM is about creating, managing and sharing electronic models of the properties of an asset throughout its life cycle – a topic relevant to just about everyone working within the built environment.  “The whole building industry – from designer and builder through to owner and tenant – can reap the benefits of reduced building costs, better solutions, minimised waste, faster project delivery, reduced risk, enhanced sustainability and better performance,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson.  “It’s crucial for our industry to look towards the future. We think the introduction of the AIRAH Digitisation Workshop to our conference line-up will be of great benefit to our members and the wider building industry.”  Prospective speakers are now welcome to submit abstracts for consideration by the conference committee. The committee members for the Digitisation Workshop 2016 are Ron Barber, App.AIRAH, from NDY; and Carl Agar from A.G. Coombs. The topics for the call are LOD in BIM, the BIM evolution in the project life cycle, technologies and software, case studies, legalities and education.

LOD in BIM
What is LOD? 
What is required for each stage?
Who is defining the LODs?

The BIM evolution in the project life cycle

Prefabrication
Concept models
Designer model to construction
Construction model to fabrication
Creating as-built models and drawings.
The use of a model after construction 

Technologies and software

Education

Case studies (but not limited to)
Prefabrication success
Differences between a coordinated model and a clash free model

Legalities
Who owns the model?
Who has taken responsibility for the model at various stages?
Who certifies the building against the model?

For those interested in speaking at the conference, all submissions must also include a 100-word author biography and a high-resolution author photo. Abstracts should be sent to AIRAH conference organiser Emily McLaughlin by Thursday, April 28. 
Email: conferences@airah.org.au

Non-AIRAH members will be required to pay a speaker fee for technical presentations.

For more information about the Digitisation Workshop 2016, or to submit an abstract, go to www.airah.org.au/conferences

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AIRAH’s comprehensive technical bulletin on kitchen exhaust fire safety is available online


Understanding and addressing the special fire risks inherent in commercial kitchen ventilation systems has never been more important.  

AIRAH has released Fire safety – Kitchen hood exhaust systems, a free online technical bulletin that offers an in-depth look at the special fire risks associated with commercial kitchen ventilation systems. 

The bulletin aims to highlight the main fire safety issues, promote a common language, and improve understanding of the risks and resulting responsibilities of all participants in the supply chain, from design and installation through to operation and continuing maintenance. 

“Kitchen exhaust systems continue to feature prominently in commercial building fire events,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson. “We have been advised there was 
$30 million worth of damage in just five incidents of businesses burning down in 2014. There are simple ways to avoid kitchen fires, and they should be implemented.

“And now, amid recent updates to relevant Australian Standards, as well as recent changes to the maintenance requirements and focus of the NCC, it is more important than ever to help address misunderstandings and misconceptions.” 

The technical bulletin was prepared by AIRAH in collaboration with a range of AIRAH members, industry regulatory organisations, state governments, fire authorities and individuals.

Developed with a wide-ranging focus, the bulletin can be used by everyone from technical service providers and facilities managers to operators of commercial kitchens, building surveyors, body corporates, local councils, property assessors and insurance companies. 

Divided into 10 sections, the 20-page bulletin covers topics such as inherent risks and the specific maintenance and inspection strategies aimed at mitigating these fire-event risks. 

“AIRAH believes kitchen ventilation systems and their impact on fire safety can be improved markedly within the community,” says AIRAH’s executive manager – government relations and technical services, Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH. “Systems must be designed and installed in accordance with the established rules and regulations. 

“Compliance is a huge area of strategic focus for AIRAH now and into the future. And Fire safety – Kitchen hood exhaust systems is all about compliance.”

The technical bulletin’s editor Vince Aherne, M.AIRAH, says continuing maintenance and inspection need to be targeted to a facility’s specific usage, and that the delivery of inspections and maintenance must be verified. 

“We hope that this fire safety technical bulletin will go some way to improving industry performance in this area and – hopefully – reduce the frequency of serious fires in buildings,” Aherne says. 

To download the technical bulletin, go to www.airah.org.au/resources or click here

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AIRAH’s Solar Heating and Cooling Workshop continues thought leadership in innovation and knowledge sharing


Held at the University of Melbourne, almost 60 delegates attended AIRAH’s 2016 Solar Heating and Cooling Workshop. Throughout the day, the importance of new ideas were stressed, and the latest emerging technology discussed. Some of the field’s foremost experts shared their knowledge and experience. 

The one-day Workshop program covered four focus areas: industry status, solar manufacturing experience, latest developments, and case studies. 

“There was a great sense of enthusiasm and engagement in the room during the Workshop,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson. “We had an excellent line-up of speakers from a range of different backgrounds, which kept everyone intrigued. The Workshop underscores the relevance of solar cooling and heating technology in relation to the built environment.”

The Workshop kicked off with a special video presentation from International keynote speaker Marco Calderoni from the Polytechnic University of Milan (POLIMI) in Italy. Calderoni delivered his presentation on solar thermal technology trends from a European perspective, providing attendees with a look at innovative approaches used in one of the world’s leading solar markets.  

The opening session of the day was capped off with a well-received presentation by the University of New South Wales' Alistair Sproul, who spoke about the integrated design process. The Associate Professor at UNSW’s School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering stressed the importance of architects and engineers working together to deliver better buildings. 

In the second half of the day, attendees were treated to presentations from some of the best young minds in solar research. 

The post-lunch sessions began with a “Student lightning round”, where PhD students Jinyi Guo, Sergio Pintaldi, and Gazinga Abdullah, Stud.AIRAH, delivered punchy presentations on their research, followed by a Q&A session. 

Returning to this year’s Workshop after delivering her student presentation two years ago, Xiaolin (Shannon) Wang, Stud.AIRAH, used her presentation to give an update on her research into warm-ice technology for cold-storage air conditioning. This was perhaps one of the key innovations unveiled during the day. Wang says that using a warm-ice hydrate tank provides significantly better energy efficiency over using multiple standard chilled-water tanks. 

AIRAH’s executive manager – government relations and technical services, Phil Wilkinson, F. AIRAH, says that events such as the Workshop are bringing new technologies to the fore.

“Recent reports are suggesting that phase-change-material thermal storage offers a cost of $200/kWh (electricity equivalent) compared with batteries at $1500/kWh,” Wilkinson says. “The technology in the solar cooling and heating space is having a commercial and environmental impact right now, which makes events such as AIRAH’s Workshop so very important.”

As always, networking and collaborating were also benefits of the Workshop, to go along with the comprehensive array of presentations.
 
AIRAH thanks event sponsor Greenland Systems, as well as the Workshop committee, Dr Stephen White, F.AIRAH; Jeremy Osborne, M.AIRAH, William (John) Dartnall, M.AIRAH; and Dr Lu Aye, F.AIRAH.

For more information about AIRAH’s coming conferences, go to www.airah.org.au/Conferences

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AIRAH’s inaugural Graduate Training Program reaches capacity


Years in the making, AIRAH’s ground-breaking Graduate Training Program is set to launch with a full intake of participants.  

Ready to kick off next month, AIRAH's Graduate Training Program has managed to reach its full capacity of 20 participants in the inaugural intake. After years of development, the strong show of support for the GTP is testament to the Institute’s commitment to grow industry skills and capability for the future. 

“This is great achievement for AIRAH and its dedicated and passionate professional development team,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson. “A lot of hard work has gone into the creation of the AIRAH GTP. To see it being received so well by the industry is extremely gratifying. We see the GTP becoming the flagship for graduates to enter the HVAC&R industry.”  

A definitive postgraduate training course for entrants to the HVAC&R industry, the Graduate Training Program will provide graduate mechanical engineers with comprehensive, practical HVAC&R training in a building services environment.

The course will cover essential HVAC&R knowledge for graduates who are employed in consulting or contracting firms but have had little exposure to the HVAC&R industry before leaving university and joining the workforce.

The initiative has been driven by AIRAH’s strategic aim to “grow industry skills and capability for the future”, as well as associated work around defining career paths for building services engineers.

At the helm of the GTP’s development, AIRAH program and learning manager Mel O’Mara shared the CEO’s delight at the Program reaching full capacity.   

“We hope the inaugural intake of the Graduate Training Program have a rewarding time as part of the course,” O’Mara says. “Having overseen the development of the GTP over the past few years, it’s exciting to finally see the fruits of AIRAH’s labour put to use by these up-and-coming graduates. We see the AIRAH Graduate Training Program helping companies provide a strong induction experience for their new graduates into the HVAC&R industry.”

An orientation for the 20 participants is slated to take place next month in Brisbane.

And a waiting list is in place for the Graduate Training Program’s next intake.

For more information about the GTP, or to register for the second intake, go to www.airah.org.au/GTP

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Marco Calderoni at the Solar Workshop 2016


The recently announced program for the Solar Heating and Cooling Workshop 2016 will bring one of HVAC’s most intriguing topics into the spotlight. 

AIRAH will host the Solar Heating and Cooling Workshop 2016 at the University of Melbourne on Thursday, March 17. Featuring an international keynote speaker, Italy’s Marco Calderoni, this year’s program is set to provide considerable food for thought. 

“All of us understand there is a need to reduce our reliance on the electricity grid,” says AIRAH’s Neil Cox. “Solar heating and cooling innovations offer a way to reduce our use of greenhouse gases and potentially on future infrastructure spending. The 2016 Workshop will continue to push the industry forward by offering a forum to showcase and discuss the latest applications of solar heating and cooling technology.”

Knowledgeable speakers from a variety of technical backgrounds will present on a broad swathe of topics throughout the one-day Workshop, the third staging of the event. The conference program is split into four focus areas: an industry status update, solar manufacturing experience, latest developments, and case studies. 

Calderoni, who hails from the Polytechnic University of Milan (POLIMI), will deliver a special video presentation on solar thermal technology trends from a European perspective. Calderoni leads the research group on solar thermal and renewable district heating for the university’s department of energy. 

“My ambition is to provide the audience with a comprehensive overview of state-of-the-art solar thermal technology,” says Calderoni. “Europe, being a leading solar market worldwide, focuses on low-cost products. I believe what we do is highly applicable to the Australian market as well.”

Also part of the Workshop program, Simon Witts, M.AIRAH, of Lehr Consultants International will detail the challenges of integrating a solar hot-water collection system into a high-temperature hot-water system. Witts’ case study explores the Monash University 1MW solar thermal field.  

“Medium-scale solar thermal installations are often put in the ‘too hard’ basket,” says Witts. “We will explain why it doesn’t need to be hard to design and integrate solar thermal into existing systems.”

Other speakers include Plant Innovation’s Stuart Elliott and Rheem’s Brendan Bourke, who will present on solar manufacturing experience. Xiaolin (Shannon) Wang, Stud.AIRAH, from the Australian National University, and associate professor Frank Bruno, M.AIRAH, from the University of SA, will deliver presentations on the latest academic developments in the burgeoning field. 

For more information about the Workshop, to view the program or to register, go to www.airah.org.au/solarworkshop 

Ends
 

 



AIRAH names Tony Gleeson as its new chief executive officer

Following a rigorous nationwide search, the Australian Institute of Refrigeration Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) has appointed Tony Gleeson as its new CEO. Gleeson takes AIRAH’s helm on February 1. 

AIRAH president Nathan Groenhout, M.AIRAH, says the board is delighted to appoint an individual of the calibre of Gleeson to head the prestigious 95-year-old not-for-for-profit Institute.

“I’m pleased to announce that following a very rigorous recruitment process, Tony Gleeson has accepted our offer for the role of CEO of AIRAH,” Groenhout says. “Tony is a highly experienced executive with an excellent track record of leading organisations through change, both nationally and internationally.”

Gleeson comes to AIRAH after holding senior consulting roles in the areas of process re-engineering and change management with PwC, Deloitte and Terra Firma Consulting, including working for the global Deloitte office in New York for more than five years. 

More recently Gleeson has held roles with CPA Australia as executive general manager for member knowledge. This saw him responsible for the organisation’s CPA certification program and on-going professional development for members, including leading the advocacy and publishing activities on a global basis. 

Following this Gleeson was the CEO of the Australia Institute of Management’s Victorian and Tasmanian operations, as well as the CEO of AIM’s online learning company, Idria. Gleeson led the states into the national integration of AIM, and held the position of acting CEO of the AIM membership company during this period.

Gleeson holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) and a Bachelor of Science Education from the University of Melbourne, a Graduate Diploma of Business from Swinburne University, is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management.

“I’m thrilled, humbled and excited to have been offered the role of CEO of AIRAH, and I look forward to the challenge of helping the organisation to grow and continue its exciting evolution,” says Gleeson.

“AIRAH has a very strong brand, and the organisation is respected for its training, conferences and publications. And its members play a vital role in everything from keeping our food fresh, to infection control and making our buildings comfortable. There is a tremendous story to tell about the HVAC&R industry.” 

Acting CEO Phil Wilkinson, F.AIRAH, will remain at AIRAH in the new role of executive manager – government relations and technical services. Current AIRAH COO Neil Cox is moving into the role of executive manager – business development.

Ends
 

 


International keynote to highlight AIRAH's Solar Heating and Cooling Workshop 2016


The recently announced program for the Solar Heating and Cooling Workshop 2016 will bring one of HVAC’s most intriguing topics into the spotlight. 

AIRAH will host the Solar Heating and Cooling Workshop 2016 at the University of Melbourne on Thursday, March 17. Featuring an international keynote speaker, Italy’s Marco Calderoni, this year’s program is set to provide considerable food for thought. 

“All of us understand there is a need to reduce our reliance on the electricity grid,” says AIRAH’s Neil Cox. “Solar heating and cooling innovations offer a way to reduce our use of greenhouse gases and potentially on future infrastructure spending. The 2016 Workshop will continue to push the industry forward by offering a forum to showcase and discuss the latest applications of solar heating and cooling technology.”

Knowledgeable speakers from a variety of technical backgrounds will present on a broad swathe of topics throughout the one-day Workshop, the third staging of the event. The conference program is split into four focus areas: an industry status update, solar manufacturing experience, latest developments, and case studies. 

Calderoni, who hails from the Polytechnic University of Milan (POLIMI), will deliver a special video presentation on solar thermal technology trends from a European perspective. Calderoni leads the research group on solar thermal and renewable district heating for the university’s department of energy. 

“My ambition is to provide the audience with a comprehensive overview of state-of-the-art solar thermal technology,” says Calderoni. “Europe, being a leading solar market worldwide, focuses on low-cost products. I believe what we do is highly applicable to the Australian market as well.”

Also part of the Workshop program, Simon Witts, M.AIRAH, of Lehr Consultants International will detail the challenges of integrating a solar hot-water collection system into a high-temperature hot-water system. Witts’ case study explores the Monash University 1MW solar thermal field.  

“Medium-scale solar thermal installations are often put in the ‘too hard’ basket,” says Witts. “We will explain why it doesn’t need to be hard to design and integrate solar thermal into existing systems.”

Other speakers include Plant Innovation’s Stuart Elliott and Rheem’s Brendan Bourke, who will present on solar manufacturing experience. Xiaolin (Shannon) Wang, Stud.AIRAH, from the Australian National University, and associate professor Frank Bruno, M.AIRAH, from the University of SA, will deliver presentations on the latest academic developments in the burgeoning field. 

For more information about the Workshop, to view the program or to register, go to www.airah.org.au/solarworkshop

Ends