Specification Magazine

January 2013

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14 FRONT COVER SPOTLIGHT New Active Energy Solutions by Tata Steel Show Building Envelope Sustainability in a New Light The Sustainable Building Centre (SBEC) SUSTAINABILITY CONSIDERATIONS IN CONSTRUCTION HAVE ARGUABLY REACHED A MATURITY PHASE WHERE DELIVERY, NOT TALK, IS EVERYTHING. THIS IS ALL HAPPENING AS A NUMBER OF INESCAPABLE TRUTHS ARE RISING TO THE SURFACE. With further reductions in CO2 emission level standards anticipated this year, plus the often hotly debated feasibility of achieving carbon neutrality in the commercial property sector by 2019, we appear to be at the beginning of a sea change in demands to create and install truly sustainable envelope solutions. Tata Steel says that it is critical to adopt a holistic approach to understanding sustainability dynamics over the whole life of products and systems, taking into account the impacts of both operational and embodied energy from sourcing, manufacture, installation, use and end of life. Only then, the company asserts, is it possible to provide specifiers with the comprehensive data they need to make a genuinely informed decision in terms of the appropriate building envelope solution. A key driver in delivering this philosophy is the important research work Tata Steel conducts at the Sustainable Building Envelope Centre (SBEC) in Shotton, Flintshire - a major multi-million pound investment involving Tata Steel, the Low Carbon Research Institute and Welsh Assembly Government. Trisomet 333 PV System SBEC's focus is on accelerating the development of low and zero carbon solutions for the built environment, using steel in combination with other materials. The company also works closely with other technology companies and pro-actively developing supply chains for the installation and maintenance of solutions that emerge. The aim is to create a construction process which will enable both roofs and walls to be transformed from a passive energy conservation role to an active energy generation, storage, dissipation and management function. Tata Steel believes that this important work will ultimately result in the deployment of low carbon buildings that enable power generation at point of consumption, reducing the dependency on external grid sources and increasing long term energy security. For more information on Architectural News visit www.specificationonline.co.uk " Wherever the market is bound, there's surely no question that the adoption of PV systems has seen a plethora of different options coming to market, all with their own advantages and disadvantages. " T he introduction in 2008 of the Government's Planning Policy Statement, PPS1, that requires all UK local planning authorities to adopt the "Merton Rule" policy, whereby new commercial buildings over 1000m2 must generate at least 10% of their own energy needs, has profound implications for standard methods of building envelope design and construction, in both new build and refurbishment.

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