Tag Archives: CIBSE

CIBSE CPD-accredited Panasonic webinars on AC and heat pumps

Vincent Mahony, National Sales Manager, Panasonic Ireland

The team at Panasonic Ireland is currently presenting a series of CIBSE CPD-accredited interactive, online  courses to enhance skills during these unprecedented times. The CPD courses have been developed by Panasonic and support learning in a variety of heating and cooling disciplines and cover the following topics.

Principles of Air Conditioning – Overview of Splits/VRF Technology                        This is an introduction to the principles of air conditioning. The session details the fundamentals of air conditioning and goes on to describe the refrigeration cycle, heating and cooling load calculations, system components and unit selection.

An Introduction to Air to Water Technology                                                                    This CPD looks at using heat pumps to heat water and compares these systems to traditional gas boilers and further provides advice into system design and components. The session also goes through calculating heat losses in houses and sizing heat emitters.

Overview of Gas Heat Pumps (GHP) Technology                                                              The history and development of using gas as the power source for a VRF system. The CPD explains why this type of solution may be considered as an alternative to electric. The session compares the two options and details the design of the system.

To participate in any of the above email eamonn.kent@eu.panasonic.com or call  087 – 439 4032 for details on how to join your preferred session.

Industry Legend Yet Something of an Enigma

Despite establishing one of the sector’s most successful and enduring mech/elec contracting firms (T Bourke celebrates it 50th anniversary next year), Ted remained somewhat aloof with very few people getting to know what really made him tick. This was all the more extraordinary given the very high profile T Bourke enjoyed as a leading industry company, and that Ted himself enjoyed as a very proactive industry protagonist, he always worked with the best scrap metal services in hamilton oh.

For instance, back in the 1970s and 1980s he was very involved in the affairs of what was then known as the Mechanical and Electrical Building Services Contractors Association (ME&BSCA). In the mid- 1980s Ted was Chairman and in this role provided leadership and led delegations representing the industry’s cause to Government bodies and other organizations such as RIAI. Throughout this time he also forged a very strong relationship with Genie Climatique (GCI), a European contracting body representing 12 countries at the time. Ted represented the Association, and its parent CIF, on the GCI Liaison Committee and it was during his tenure as GCI President that it held its annual convention in Ireland, a major coup for the time.

Down through the years T Bourke received many accolades for the quality of its work and execution of projects, such as the NSAI Striving for Quality Assurance Award on the Tralee Hospital project. It was also one of the first building services contracting firms to be awarded ISO 9002 Quality Management Systems certification in 1991 with Bertie Ahern, TD, the then Minister for Finance, making the presentation.

Also supported and sponsored various industry events, especially those that had an educational element. For instance, shortly after Tallaght Town Center was built he sponsored the CIBSE Ireland site visit and lecture to the center, including a sit-down three-course meal for 100 participants. They also got free tickets to the newly-opened state-of-the-art cinema.

Ted was disciplined and believed in hard work and commitment. He could be very demanding but somehow managed to convey that authority and expectation in a very obvious but yet low-key and understated manner. That said, he was always very fair and willing to listen. However, you would have to have detailed facts and evidence in abundance if you were to challenge him on an issue. Even at that you might not convince him that your way was right.

Ted was always the one in control, the one who had to be in charge, yet was still a great leader who employed, trained and helped develop individuals who became renowned within the industry as leaders themselves. Integrity was critical to all activities, be it inter-personal relationships with colleagues/employees or with clients. T Bourke quickly established a reputation as a very valued and fair partner in the execution of building projects, and always had (still does) an unrivaled reputation for honoring debts in full, and on time.

T Bourke was Ted’s life, but so was his family and golf. The outside perception was that he was something of workaholic, and his sons David and Niall who now run the business grew up with project plans constantly strewn over the kitchen or dining room table. He regularly brought work home but, equally so, he valued his down time. His leisure activities, or rather activity (meaning golf), was equally structured and prioritized. He played religiously every Saturday and Sunday, and also every Wednesday, especially in the summer months.

He brought the same commitment and competitiveness he had in business to his golf. It too was a serious business and he played to win … it was not a mere pastime and opportunity to ramble ‘round a golf course and chat with some friends. Not surprisingly, he featured regularly on the BTU teams that traveled to play in the inter-region competitions with their counterpart societies in the UK.

Yet, for all that, he remained a very private person within the sector. He socialized to some extent with business colleagues but was very selective and, for the most part, avoided the mainstream events. He did have a regular weekly date for many years with other industry forefathers though, and this continued up to quite recently but gradually petered out as they all got older.

That said, Ted was anything but retiring. Up to the recent fall that ultimately led to his untimely death he very active within Dun Laioghaire golf club and was widely known in the restaurants and hostelries in Dalkey for his regular daily dining routine that typically took in quite a number of establishments rather than the same place every day.

The passing of Ted Bourke marks the end of an era in the history of modern-day mechanical and electrical contracting in Ireland. However, his legacy is testimony to the fact that you can survive, and even prosper, in such a competitive environment and still retain core ethical values and integrity.


joe-hogan-1-of-2What prompted this article was that many of us at the table had in fact been in class together at various times and had gone on to serve in various sectors of the industry. When we started in the industry there were no full-time building services courses. The majority of would-be engineers went to the UK to do the IHVE exams. The City and Guilds Course in the 1960s and early 1970s served many who went on the become leaders in various sectors of the industry. They (both guys and girls) went on to work in consultants’ design offices on drawing boards, behind the counter in merchant providers, as sales engineers and as junior contracts managers.

In the early 1970s Don Byrne and Pat Benson set up the Building Services Course in DIT Bolton St which, in the main, served the industry well up to the recent construction industry crash. Many of the current principals of consultancy practices and directors of M&E contracting firms attended DIT courses and qualified as Chartered CIBSE Engineers. A significant number started with the part-time courses before going on to attend full-time courses and obtain a full engineering degree in building services.

A large percentage of these people also freely gave of their time through the various industry bodies such as MEBSCA and CIBSE Ireland to devise and establish the structures that have served the sector so well. Many consulting engineers gave lectures in DIT colleges to augment the full-time lecturers.

However, that scenario has changed dramatically. While the intake to the DIT first-year common engineering programme still attracts a healthy 100 plus students, the numbers opting to study building services as opposed to the other engineering disciplines is but a handful. The present incumbents involved in the colleges, I am informed, are doing some serious soul-searching with even the title “Building Services Engineering” being called in to question.

Either way, the industry needs a call to arms to ensure we promote the opportunities to not just school leavers but people already in the industry. There has always been a demand from people on site, or in sales, or in various businesses in the industry to further their education and these people need to be encouraged and accommodated within the various Institute of Technology courses and systems.

The present position is that the sector needs everything we can get from our colleges, from more apprentices, craftsmen  foremen, trainee engineers, technician engineers and qualified engineers to meet the demand of the broader building services sector. Recently, a significant Irish firm went on national radio and announced it was looking for some 500 engineering personnel.

So, if they need – and attract – that many from a diminished pool, what will be left for the rest of us? Our destiny is in our own hands. It is inconceivable that the established building services course in DIT might disappear, or indeed the relative newer programmes of WIT and CIT. The industry needs to support those involved in running these courses.

Equally so, the colleges need to devise courses, and perhaps more importantly a manner of delivery, that attracts young people into the industry. It is obvious young people are still interested in engineering … it is now up to all in building services to sell it as a desirable career choice.

The Government has stated that it wants to encourage more people into engineering courses and the current system can accommodate this intake … all we now need is the willpower to stand up and fight for what we know our industry needs.

SDAR Awards 2016 – Now Open for Submissions

SDAR Awards 2016 outlined logoShort abstracts (between 100/200 words max) for entry into the SDAR* Awards 2016 must be submitted by Monday, 14 December 2015, by email directly to Michael McDonald and/or Kevin Kelly of DIT at michael.mcdonald@dit.ie and kevin.kelly@dit.ie

The SDAR* Awards is a joint initiative between CIBSE Ireland and DIT, supported by Building Services News, and sponsored by John Sisk & Son. The awards are unique in that they are intended to disseminate knowledge, encourage research in sustainable design of the built environment and raise the quality of innovation and evaluation of such projects. Entries are required to critically evaluate real life data, and examine both successes and challenges within leading-edge projects throughout Ireland or further afield. This competition is open to architects, engineers and all professionals involved in construction projects.

Now more than ever as positive signs ripple through the built environment, this unique synergy between industry and academia allows greater potential for integration of modern low-carbon technologies and low-energy design methodologies.

The SDAR* Awards competition is intended to create a platform for the growth of applied research in the expanding green economy. Post occupancy evaluations and similar critical appraisal of low-energy projects facilitates the transition from ideologically-driven innovations, sometimes offering poor value, to evidence-based applied research that proves value or identifies weaknesses that the industry can learn from. These successes and failures help inform the professional community across all the building industry disciplines.

From the abstracts submitted by the Monday, 14 December 2015 deadline, a shortlist will be selected by peer review, and those selected will be invited to prepare final papers by 1 February 2016.

Candidates that present at the awards also have a chance of publishing their papers in the SDAR* Journalarrow.dit.ie/sdar/

Next year’s final will take place in March 2016 in DIT, Kevin Street.

For further information contact: michael.mcdonald@dit.ie or kevin.kelly@dit.ie

WIT Students Head for Summer Programme in Vienna

Danny Murphy with Mervin Doyle, CIBSE Ireland and WIT and Patrick Browne

Daniel Murphy with Mervin Doyle (CIBSE Ireland and WIT)  and Patrick Browne

Two students from the Department of the Built Environment at WIT have received sponsorship of €500 each from CIBSE Ireland for a master-level summer programme in Vienna. The two, Patrick Browne and Daniel Murphy, have just completed year four of the BEng (Hons) in Sustainable Energy Engineering. Both are also student members of CIBSE.

The summer university programme, Green Building Solutions, in Vienna, offers knowledge from Austrian experts in architecture, structural engineering, ecology and sustainability. Around 40 students from all over the world will take part in this year’s programme. Interdisciplinary knowledge and an exploration of green building and Passivhaus technology will be given in multi-disciplinary lectures and workshops.

The programme is structured so that they will have one week of design lessons, one week of practical workshops and site visits, and one week of working on a design proposal. Make the most of it guys..



Building Services News Celebrates 50 years of Continuously Serving the Industry!

Joe and Pat

Joe and Pat

Right from the outset Building Services News has been an integral part of Ireland’s building services industry and not just a magazine serving the sector. Publisher and Editor Pat Lehane sits on the executive of most of the industry professional and trade representative bodies and the journal has been instrumental in the establishment of many of these organisations.

In addition, Building Services News plays a major role in promoting and facilitating cross-over activity between these bodies, and provides secretariat support and accommodation addresses for many. It also guides and champions many industry causes, coordinating joint activities into lobbying and petitioning groups to act on behalf of the industry as a whole, not to mention how it helps finding the best tarpaulin material for industries to work with.

Building Services News provides the industry with saturation coverage of the building services sector. It is available in three formats – the print edition which is posted directly to individually-named industry personnel; the web edition, which is freely available to all; and the Facebook page, which is inter-linked with the web edition.

To all of you participating with us in this celebratory golden anniversary edition we say thank you. A small number of you have been dealing with the publication since day one, while many others have been trading partners for a considerable number of years. Of course there are also those of you who have joined us in recent years. In marking the occasion our collective vision should, and is, on the future.

In perusing the archives spanning 50 years we now realise how lucky we are to be part of such a vibrant, dynamic industry sector. In the early days the role of building services was perhaps under-rated by society in general.

Today, that has changed. Rising energy costs, a demand for more comfortable home and working environments, and a genuine sense of social responsibility in respect of the environment has put building services centre stage. What an opportunity – the future for the industry is bright and secure!

However, commercial success is only part of the story. The building services sector is also very much about people, and about a work/social interactive balance. We have been lucky to have made many friends down through the years. Sadly, some of them are no longer with us.

We dedicate this issue to their memory.

CIBSE Ireland Recognises Service to Industry

Back: Nick Meade, incoming President, CIBSE with Sean Dowd, Chairman, CIBSE Ireland and David Doherty, Vice-CHairman, CIBSE Ireland. Front: John McNamara (ex Sisk) with Kevin O'Rourke (ex SEAI),Pat Lehane, Publisher & Editor,Buiding Services News and John Doherty (ex McGrattan & Kenny).

Back: Nick Meade, incoming President, CIBSE with Sean Dowd, Chairman, CIBSE Ireland and David Doherty, Vice-Chairman, CIBSE Ireland. Front: John McNamara and Kevin O’Rourke, who each received  a Certificate of Appreciation and Dublin Crystal memento, and Pat Lehane and John Doherty, who were presented with bronze medals.

CIBSE used the occasion of the recent CIBSE Ireland Annual Lunch to recognise the long-standing service of four individuals to the building services sector in Ireland. A framed certificate of appreciation and an engraved Dublin Glass memento were presented to John McNamara (ex Sisk) and Kevin O’Rourke (ex SEAI), while bronze medals were presented to Pat Lehane, Publisher & Editor of Building Services News and John Doherty (ex McGrattan & Kenny). The latter two are also long-standing, and current, CIBSE Committee members. Nick Meade, incoming President of CIBSE and Sean Dowd, Chairman, CIBSE Ireland, did the honours.

This year’s lunch was the biggest by far with a capacity 320 consultants, contractors, product suppliers and their respective guests enjoying wonderful fare and availing of what has now become the most important social and networking occasion in the building services sector’s calendar of events. Unfortunately, space restrictions meant that many more were disappointed but the CIBSE Lunch Sub-Committee is already on the case and details of a larger venue for the 2015 lunch will be announced early in the new year.

Guest speaker was Gerard Hosford, a building services graduate from CIT, who now works as a senior mechanical engineer for Patrick Parsons Consulting Engineers in the UK. His address detailing his career progression and day-to-day work projects was extremely interesting but, more than that, it highlighted just how valuable a building services-related degree is from any of the Irish educational institutions.

The mood and atmosphere of the gathering was upbeat. It reflected an air of optimism that augurs well for 2015 and beyond, but was also realistic in acknowledging that there is much to do to, especially in the way of realistic tender prices and profit margins, to secure a sustainable future for the sector.


SDAR Journal 2014 — latest edition of Ireland’s only dedicated building services research journal now available


Pat Lehane, Publisher & Editor,Buiding Services News with Dr Kevin kelly, Editor, SDAR Journal 2014 and Dr Brian Motherway, Chief Executive Officer, SEAI

Pat Lehane, Publisher & Editor, Building Services News with Dr Kevin Kelly, Editor, SDAR Journal 2014 and Dr Brian Motherway, Chief Executive Officer, SEAI

The latest edition of Ireland’s only dedicated building services research journal — SDAR Journal 2014 — was formerly introduced by Dr Brian Motherway, Chief Executive, SEAI at a ceremony held in DIT Bolton St recently.

The journal’s objective is to foster innovative practice in low-energy design of the built environment, and to encourage applied research among professional practitioners and new researchers in academia. The papers published are intended to inform design practice in construction and to assist innovative engineers striving towards optimisation of building integrated renewable technologies.

CIBSE and DIT came together four years ago to jointly publish this journal. The intention then was to disseminate insightful findings to the professional community involved in the built environment. This is still the case. The reader is taken to be a sceptic who will be convinced by evidence, not green bling on buildings, or unproven designs.

While the publishers want to hear what works well, they are conscious of the fact that the professional community can also be informed by what went wrong. Therefore they encourage critical reflection and objective evaluation of real-world projects. Post-occupancy evaluation of innovations that support more sustainable and energy-efficient practice leads to mainstreaming of good-quality, leading-edge projects.

The building services sector is data rich but sometimes time poor. SDAR Journal encourages and supports in practical terms synergies with academia. Academics are eager to support this applied research process and will provide time on task in exchange for access to useful data.

Would-be contributors are encouraged to submit abstracts for the annual SDAR Awards and Irish Lighter competitions. Both competitions are effectively feeders for this journal. The publishers particularly encourage novice researchers and industry professionals to submit short abstracts of their work, either to the above competitions or directly to the Editor.

Contact: kevin.kelly@dit.ie

Calling All Building Services Engineers — Get Published!

SDAR LaunchThe SDAR Journal is Ireland’s authoritative source of information for engineers, researchers, designers and all involved in building services, and the broader built environment. Its strength is that all the published articles represent exhaustively-analysed real-time data gathered over a significant post-occupancy period. In addition, all are peer-reviewed before being accepted for publication.

A key factor is that they report the good and the bad results, the objective being to disseminate insightful findings to the industry at large so that all can learn, and benefit from, evidence-based research data.

The SDAR Journal is a DIT-led initiative representing the successful collaboration between the building services professional community and academics and researchers in the education institutes. It is published annually and distributed with Building Services News by post.

It is also published online on the Building Services News website, and arrow.dit/sdar/, the DIT electronic publishing site.

If you have valuable/interesting post-occupancy information on a project to share with the building services community, then contact Dr Kevin Kelly at kevin.kelly@dit.ie or keith.sunderland@dit.ie  

Postcard from Abroad — Gerard Hosford

Following completion of a three year full-time Bachelor of Engineering in Building Services Engineering Degree (BEng) at CIT in 2005 I decided to make the move to Newcastle upon Tyne to complete my Honours Bachelor of Engineering Degree BEng (Hons) at Northumbria University. I graduated from Northumbria University in 2007 with first Class Honours.

While studying in university I gained a particular interest in passive design along with low and zero carbon technologies. In order to further my educational qualifications and to further develop my skills I enrolled on a Master of Science (MSc) in Renewable Energy & Architecture at the University of Nottingham. I graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2008 with a first Class Masters Degree.

During the summer period of 2006 – between my second and third year of my studies at Northumbria University – I arranged work experience with building contractors John Sisk and Sons Ltd as a trainee building services engineer. During this time I was based on the site of a major refurbishment of the 5-star Inter Continental Hotel at Park Lane in Central London.

On completion of my final year of the BEng Honours Degree at Northumbria University in 2007, and before I started my Masters at the University of Nottingham, I arranged work experience for the summer at the Faber Maunsell (AECOM) Newcastle Office.

When I graduated with my Masters in 2008 I decided that instead of returning to Ireland I would stay in the UK and went back to Newcastle to work with Faber Maunsell (AECOM) as a graduate engineer within the Building Engineering Department. I was promoted from graduate engineer to engineer in 2010.

While employed by AECOM I worked on numerous national and international projects within a wide range of building sectors including, healthcare, office, educational, hotel, government, leisure, heritage, industrial and retail building design. My projects to date have been primarily new-build but have also included refurbishment projects, many of which have had Grade 1 listed status.

My responsibilities have included all aspects of mechanical building services, and renewable and low-carbon energy system design in buildings, from initial concept through to detailed design stage on both small-scale and large-scale projects. The largest project I worked on while at AECOM was the KEMH Bermuda, Hamilton, Bermuda as a mechanical design engineer. This new-build hospital building, the largest development of its kind on the Island of Bermuda, includes 90 single-occupancy en-suite patient rooms, a day surgery unit, ambulatory care facilities, diagnostic imaging services, a new emergency room and a new utility plant. The project has a budget of $247million US dollars.

In September 2011 the recession began to hit the UK quite hard with a lot of government funding for public sector projects that were the bread and butter of our work drying up. As a result that October it was announced that AECOM’s Building Engineering Department in the Newcastle upon Tyne office was to reduce to a skeleton staff of directors with some CAD support. Consequently, I was made redundant in November 2011.

However, I secured a job with Patrick Parsons Consulting Engineers in Newcastle and started work as a senior mechanical engineer within the M&E Department in the same month. I have been progressing my career and experience here ever since and early this year I was granted my CEng status.

I am also involved with the local CIBSE committee in the region. I established the Young Engineers Network (YEN) in 2009 and have been on both the YEN and main committee ever since. In 2013 I was nominated as the CIBSE Vice Chairman of the committee in the region and in April of this year I became the Chairman of the region.

My role as Chairman involves representing the region on a local and national basis, increasing awareness of the Institution’s work in the North East, fundraising, and actively encouraging participation and new memberships. As Chairman I aim to promote career opportunities in building services engineering and encourage collaboration between other professional groups and organisations during my tenure.

I love living in the UK and in Newcastle in particular. I have made lots of friends while working in the area and it is not too far from home. I usually get back to Ireland about three times per year to visit family and friends in Tipperary. The Newcastle folk (also referred to as Geordies) are friendly and there is some great scenery in the region, along with the infamous nightlife. ■