Max Fordham takes on Britain’s biggest Passivhaus

Camden’s Agar Grove estate is to become the UK’s biggest residential Passivhaus project. Max Fordham’s Bertie Dixon describes the challenges of building an 18-storey tower to the standard, and explains why the council is committed to the low energy code

Roundtable: What’s next for heating, cooling and ventilation?

How does our approach to services need to adapt to tackle issues such as climate change? A CIBSE Journal roundtable, sponsored by Mitsubishi Electric, examined the factors influencing the design of heating, cooling and ventilating – now and in the future. Andrew Brister reports

Thermal expansion and grooved pipe-joining systems

A grooved pipe-joining system is one method of accommodating thermal expansion and contraction in HVAC systems. Victaulic’s Larry Thau explains the technique’s design benefits and mechanical advantages

The balance of power – modelling a microgrid in Durban, South Africa

Smart grids offer the potential for buildings to generate and store power for future use. Mike Barker MCIBSE, of BuildingPhysics, says it will be the job of engineers to calculate the optimum level of renewables for a building to be profitable. He considers the economic viability of incorporating a microgrid at the Durban International Convention Centre in South Africa

What’s so attractive about magnetic refrigeration?

Magnetic refrigeration has the potential to reduce energy use by 30% and requires no refrigerant. Metkel Yebiyo and Graeme Maidment, of Sirach, describe the technology, its main applications, and the challenges facing firms trying to get the concept to market

Above and beyond – innovation in building photovoltaics

As the 2020 ‘nearly zero’ energy buildings target approaches, Liza Young explores Swansea University’s pioneering research into building-integrated photovoltaics, as well as its unique ways of storing heat for use all year round

Down to zero – winner of Ashrae modelling competition

An ASHRAE competition pitched teams of industry practitioners against each other to come up with the best model of a zero-net energy building. ‘Team IES’ won Best Energy Use and the firm’s Liam Buckley, who coached the team, describes the winning project

Smooth transition – what the ErP Directive means for consultants

Condensing boilers have been mandatory in the domestic market for more than a decade, but it is only recently that the commercial sector has followed suit after the introduction of the ErP Directive. Bosch’s Pete Mills explains what the new requirements mean for consultants