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With a set of ambitious carbon and energy reduction targets, the University of Worcester frequently ranks as one of the most sustainable universities in the country. But when the 30 year old boiler plant on its St John’s campus had become susceptible to breakdown, the decision was taken to invest in a new energy centre capable of safeguarding a greener future.

Mark Evans, Assistant Estates Director explained: “Having served the university for over 30 years, our previous plant had reached the point where boilers were prone to regular breakdown, and, due to the age of the system, spare parts had become increasingly difficult to source. This left us in an extremely vulnerable position in terms of reliability as well as efficiency.

“The University of Worcester is a relatively new university and has grown substantially in recent years, doubling both our student numbers and building footprint. It’s very important for our students to have absolute comfort and high-quality facilities.” 

To tackle these issues, the estates and maintenance teams at the university worked closely with another renowned Worcester-based organisation – Bosch Commercial and Industrial – to replace its end-of-life boilers with four 1,200kW floor standing, condensing models. Boasting compact dimensions and 97% efficiency, each 8000 F stainless steel condensing boiler also uses intelligent water flow and provides the ideal conditions for optimum condensation which, in turn, deliver high standard utilisation ratios.

The new boilers were supported by the installation of three high-efficiency, 500l calorifiers, six twin head pumps, and zoned configuration of pipework within the energy centre. 

Mark continued: “Before the new energy centre came into play, there was no way to control the heat being sent into our buildings – it was simply either on or off. Because of intuitive technology and the addition of BMS-compatible controls, we have a resilient and controllable system. We’re not afraid to turn the boilers on as we know they’re always going to react to demand, we can access spare parts very quickly, and we have a team of engineers who are comfortable working on the system if required.”

The installation has resulted in a 24% reduction in gas consumption. Not only that, but lengthy periods of downtime are now a thing of the past, while staff have been boosted by the peace of mind that maintenance will be much simpler as a result of advanced boiler design and greater spares availability. Such is the success of the project, a number of condensing boilers have been installed in over 12 buildings. 

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