Building services play a major role in the operation of a building, providing the amenities that make the building habitable.
Types of services
Heat systems can vary from project to project but there are two primary types; hydraulic and mechanical. Hydraulic systems use water passing through pipes to radiators or underfloor coils, which heat the room. Mechanical heating uses a fan which draws air from the heated room and passes over a naked flam, heating the air which is then transferred into rooms, via ducts.
The use of air conditioning has become more prevalent in recent years and it is now an expectation that modern building are adequately air conditioned. The two primary types of air conditioning are evaporative cooling and split system.
Evaporative cooling uses air drawn from the outside, which passes over a water cooled plate, cooling the air, which is then transferred to the rooms via ducts.
Split system air conditioners operates by compressing refrigerant and then expanding it at pressure, this drastic change in pressure causes a cooling effect creating a chilled heat exchanger, for which the mechanically drawn internal air passes over.
Ventilation refers to the movement of fresh air into habitable and non habitable rooms. The NCC dictates the minimum ventilation requirement which can be achieved either through natural ventilation or mechanical ventilation.
Stands for heating, ventilation and air conditioning.
With the impacts of global warming becoming more prevalent, and recent international agreements being signed such as the Paris Agreement, renewable energy has become both a social and legal responsibility. The most common form of renewable electricity is solar photovoltaic solar panels, which harness the sun's energy and converts it to electricity which can then be fed into the building's network, via the main switch board.
Power is fed to the building via the State Energy Network. This power network is predominately fuelled by coal power plants, which generates electricity for distribution through the power lines seen in the streets.
Lighting plays a key role in ensuring the building is fit for purpose, and will change significantly throughout, depending on what the rooms intended use is. The lighting network is connected to the buildings distribution framework.
Distribution of power throughout the building begins with the building's switch board, which is fed from either the grid or local renewables. The switch board is metered too, which is used to calculate the common-use electricity bills.
The building's appliances are also fed from the mains distribution switch board.
Hot water supply
Hot water supply will vary from project to project. Smaller projects may favour localised hot water generation, where each apartment is serviced by it's own individual hot water service. However, in recent years it has become more common to have a centralised plant room, which feeds a reticulated hot water circuit to individual apartments.
The cold water supply is fed into the building from the local water authority and is distributed through the building to appartments and plant rooms. Each apartment is metered and billed for their individual usage.
Most tall buildings will have at least one plant room with some buildings having multiple, depending on the building's height and floor layout. Plant rooms typically contain boilers and gas boosters (for hot water distribution )and pump stations (for cold water distribution and fire services).
The buildings sewer system connects waste water from fixtures such as, showers, toilets, basins, sinks and floor waste gullies. Each apartment has it's on self contained system which is then connected to the buildings network via stacks linking each floor. The buildings network discharges to the local water authorities connection point