IMI Hydronic Engineering31 August 2015
Leading the way in hydronic innovation and training
In an HVAC industry focused on creating energy efficient heating and cooling solutions by using water instead of air, it’s surprising that innovation can be hard to come by. But IMI Hydronic Engineering’s Melbourne office is leading the way through innovation in training, sharing their expertise with Australia’s mechanical plumbers, building commissioners, engineers, project managers and building consultants.
We visited IMI’s new Port Melbourne premises and spoke to Manager Peter Frew about the new facility, their free training sessions and innovation in the industry.
The new space
Completed in June this year, IMI’s new training location in central Port Melbourne is a step up from their previous facility in industrial Moorabbin. With 80% of IMI’s customers based in or around the city, the move was an easy decision.
Part of the company’s global chain of training centres, the new facility has been specifically designed to provide professionals working in the HVAC sector with industry-leading training on how to optimise hydronic systems. Equipped with realistic models of hydronic circuits, the space offers an impressive view into the inside workings of hydronic systems as well as a complete range of Tour and Anderson balancing and control valves.
“It’s a full operating Building Management System (BMS), so we can drive up and down the actuators on any of the control valves or any of the valving systems,” said Peter.
“This allows people to come in to actually see the new products before they are installed into the system. Because we’ve got the facilities here to replicate the issue that they might have had on site, we’re able to work through any problems and help solve them.”
Improving the industry through training
Exclusively developed for installers, consultants and contractors working in the HVAC sector, the free training sessions can run from two hours to two days. The sessions educate visitors and provide practical, hands-on experience in the successful design, installation and balancing of hydronic systems to ensure the ultimate in energy efficiency and achieve comfortable indoor climates.
But why would people already working in the field need training? Peter believes that with building designs continually changing, people need to upgrade their skills to keep up. And because IMI’s customer base ranges from building owners to consultants to mechanical contractors and commissioning engineers, IMI tailor their sessions to suit different requirements.
The training sessions assist mechanical contractors in reducing their time on site by showing them shortcuts and making sure they meet the requirements for their qualifications to ensure the building has been commissioned correctly and adjusted to its best suitability.
Innovation in hydronic engineering
IMI innovates by simulating real-life scenarios within their training facility. “Because each building is different, we can simulate specific problems customers come to us with, and show them how to overcome any of the issues they might experience out in the field,” said Peter.
“Using a hydronic calculation tool, we calculate the pressure drops within a system so we can analyse a building and decide what each one of the pressure ranges is going to be in each system.”
IMI is all about giving back to the industry. And being the only facility in the world that offers such innovation, it’s no wonder they have cemented themselves as the Australian leader in hydronic engineering.
“It’s an IMI facility, but it’s open to the [whole] industry. We’re here to assist people. It’s not just our facility, it’s for the greater good of the hydronics field.”
To sign up for an IMI HVAC seminar, visit www.imi-hydronic.com/en/hvac-seminars-training/seminar-calendar/