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Background

Offering premium and contemporary living in the heart of Abu Dhabi’s exclusive Yas Island development, the Aldar residential compound comprises 488 highly specified luxury villas for discerning Emirati owners.

The development – which was completed in December 2013 – had been designed and built using a chiller air conditioning system. By early summer 2014 the limitations of this system had become apparent, with residents complaining the A/C was not effectively cooling the villas in the harsh summer heat.

Challenge

The project demanded a high-end cooling solution that matched the high-end design and finish of the villas. However, with 90% occupancy and soaring summer temperatures the developers needed a quick-fix that would solve the issue immediately, and guarantee long-term comfort and cooling.

Taqeef’s design and technical teams interrogated the project, re-engineering and re-designing HVAC plans to create a system that was fit for purpose. Minimizing disruption to the villa owners was key, so an infrastructure redesign was not practical. Instead, Taqeef had to design and develop a new, more effective cooling system, while using the previous chiller system infrastructure.

We used the latest industry intelligence to ensure the equipment size, layout, airflow calculation, ventilation, acoustic study and environmental impact was the best it could be. Then we developed a seamless solution that could be installed with minimum disruption to the villa owners and minimum cost to the developers.

Solution

A ducted split system – using compact DX units – was engineered to replace the large chiller fan units. To maximize efficiency, the DX units featured an energy conservation mode which raises the set temperature slightly in cooling mode using in-built software. As well as matching the existing power requirement in the villas, this ensured the economic operation of the unit. Durability and life-span were also a key factor in specifying this system. The outdoor cabinets featured hot dip zinc coated steel sheets with polyester coated paint for maximum durability, while the condenser coils were coated with corrosion-proof blue fin to protect the aluminium fins from harsh weather conditions. Despite the fact the cooling units had different sizes and CFMs, Taqeef managed to engineer a solution which utilised 80% of the original ducting.

To measure the efficiency of the new design and stress-test the installation restrictions, Taqeef built the system in a model villa. Once approved by the client, we delivered 3,400 low power consumption ducted units in a 3-month period. To meet delivery timings during the peak summer period, Taqeef even air-lifted in additional stock to fulfill short turn-around order requirements.

Despite significant time and design restrictions, the project was completed on time, within budget and to the satisfaction of the developer and villa owners alike. Taqeef is now a preferred supplier to Aldar Properties.

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