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Skills and Services

Our strong interdisciplinary team work in the key areas listed below.

We are actively involved in developing climate change policy for businesses and local authorities. Much of our work is aimed at supporting these organisations in meeting their carbon reduction commitments. Our work in this area includes:

  • Audits of regional energy use
  • Audits of greenhouse gas emissions
  • Development of carbon reduction strategies
  • Multivariate and spatial analyses based on Geographical Information Systems (GIS) mapping

We are actively involved in assessing the impacts of climate change on buildings. Much of our work in this area supports local authorities and businesses as they adapt their existing buildings to cope with climate change, and to inform the design process for new buildings. Our work in this area includes:

  • Evaluating the impact of climate change on buildings and occupants
  • Design stage advice on adaptation options for buildings
  • Retrofit building adaptation strategies

It can be challenging to design sustainable buildings that successfully balance energy efficiency, thermal comfort, lighting and acoustics. We provide design advice that considers the interaction between these sometimes conflicting requirements, to assist the client in arriving at successful, affordable solutions. Our involvement can range from strategic advice for incorporation into procurement and tender documents to advice on detailed aspects of the design.

We can provide consultancy in the following areas:

  • Thermal modelling
  • Thermal performance under climate change scenarios
  • Daylight simulations and calculations
  • Acoustics

We have been monitoring the performance of buildings since the Centre's inception in 1977. During this time we have developed a detailed insight of how buildings actually function, the challenges of obtaining reliable performance data and strategies to overcome these challenges. This expertise can help diagnose a variety of problems related to energy use, ventilation, thermal comfort and acoustics. Our key areas of expertise are:

  • Quantifying acoustic performance (room acoustics, sound insulation, noise control)
  • Assessing in-use energy performance from installed and temporary metering
  • Assessing in-use water performance
  • Monitoring of building services performance
  • Monitoring of occupant comfort (temperature, humidity)
  • Monitoring of indoor air quality

We are particularly experienced in providing remedial advice for existing buildings and monitoring studies that are tailored to the intricacies of the building under evaluation.

Renewable energy systems are fast becoming an integral part of new developments and are key in developing achieving a sustainable solution at an individual site, local, regional or national level. However, with so many competing technologies available properly informed design decisions are vital. We provide the following services:

  • Regional and local renewable energy feasibility pre-assessments
  • Evaluation of uptake of renewable energy technologies
  • Evaluations of district heating viability
  • Advice on biomass boiler feasibility and biomass fuel supply chains
  • Integrated design advice considering renewable technologies alongside monitored or predicted energy loads and energy efficiency measures
  • Economic cost-benefit analysis
  • Monitoring of renewable energy installations

Every building and development is unique and will require individual an individual solution. Whether the project is a new or existing building, we can advise on suitable renewable energy strategies.‌

Transport accounts for around a third of UK carbon dioxide emissions and strategies to combat poor air quality locally can be detrimental to carbon emission reduction. We are experienced in working with both local authorities and businesses to assess emissions from fleets, operations or geographical areas. Our range of services include:

  • Interpretation of monitored levels of local air quality pollutants
  • Dispersion modelling of pollutants
  • Source apportionment based on vehicle flow data
  • Creation of emissions inventories (carbon and air quality pollutants) at a local or regional scale
  • Evaluating the effect of fleet upgrades, operational parameters and new technologies
  • Evaluating the impact of alternative vehicle fuels
  • Evaluating the effect of road schemes on emissions and resident health
  • Sustainable transport policy formulation
  • Quantification of the effect of local and national policy measures
  • Advice on fleet management strategies

We have fostered many long term partnerships with commerce and industry and have developed bespoke research projects for clients in the following areas:

  • Reducing energy use in production processes
  • Transport fleet management
  • Lifecycle assessments for products and services
  • Integrated waste management and energy from waste solutions

As well as conventional consultancy and research contracts, a further vehicle for the delivery of targeted research for your organisation is available in the form of a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP). This arrangement gives you access to expertise, not just in the Centre itself, but across the wider university. Previous KTPs have involved collaborations with the School of Education, College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences (now part of the Faculty of Environment, Science and Economy), and the School of Psychology. Partnering with us gives you access to consultants, engineers and academics who are world leaders in their field. Further information is available on the University's Working with Business webpages.