Product / system supply
Catalyst Communities Housing Association
Promode Building Services
Catalyst Communities Housing Association (CCHA), the largest member of the Catalyst Housing Group, provides more than 11,000 affordable homes in London and the Thames Valley. CCHA is committed to sustainable development and lowering the carbon footprint of all of its housing stock.
O’Grady Court is a sheltered housing accommodation block built in 1984 comprising 62 predominantly one-bedroomed flats, a lounge, laundry facilities, garden, community centre and hobby room. Its heating plant was in need of replacement.
CCHA opted for solar thermal equipment from Stokvis Energy Systems.
David Manuell, designer at Promode Building Services, the firm responsible for the design and build heating contract said: “We opted to replace the old atmospheric boilers and direct gas-fired water heaters with high efficiency, wall-mounted condensing boilers and a plate heat exchanger from Stokvis.”
The Stokvis Ecotube is an advanced form of evacuated tube solar collector which is designed to maximise the solar energy absorbed and minimise heat loss through radiation. Developed and patented by Riomay, Ecotube has substantially reduced the amount of ‘parasitic’ energy lost by most evacuated tube systems (energy used up by the system itself during the process of converting solar energy to heat).
As a result, the system requires smaller pumps to circulate the fluid in the evacuated tube collector meaning that there are fewer drops in pressure through the system, giving a more sustained level of heat than almost any other system.
As the footprint of the new plant was dramatically reduced, this liberated space in the plantroom. “With the extra space we could now fit a Solar Thermal Vessel in the plantroom so we’ve put 12m2 of solar thermal equipment on the flat roof above the boiler room” said David Manuell. Five Stokvis Riomay evacuated Ecotube solar collectors will offset around 10,500 kWh per annum that would otherwise have to be generated from the gas-fired boilers.