Support from CP Electronics keeps HS2 project on track

Input from CP Electronics throughout the construction of the National College for High Speed Rail has supported a quality-assurance approach to lighting control, resulting in a smoother installation for contractors.

With the huge investment in infrastructure resulting from HS2, demand for highly-skilled rail engineers is expected to grow significantly over the next few years. Thousands of engineers will need to be trained to deliver this ambitious project, and so the National College for High Speed Rail in Doncaster will play an important part in meeting the future requirements of the UK rail sector. Support from CP Electronics at each phase of the development project, from design to completion, ensured that the project was executed correctly, first time round.

Overseeing the electrical installation of the project was Briggs & Forrester Engineering Services Ltd, a business which has worked with CP Electronics on a number of successful projects over the years. Having worked with Briggs & Forrester on a number of successful projects in the past, CP was asked to provide a lighting plan based on the technical and cost objectives of the project. It was on the strength of this comprehensive plan that CP was selected to provide lighting controls for the development, working with Briggs & Forrester to continue to evolve the lighting plan in line with changing project requirements.

The building itself features an atrium and is divided up into a combination of office space, lecture rooms and workshops, which are spread across three storeys. CP Electronics was tasked with meeting the lighting control requirements for the learning spaces. While the original plan was to opt for a fully-addressable system, the requirements of the project made this less suitable and so CP was able to recommend alternative lighting control solutions better suited for the task. CP’s Vitesse Plus standalone lighting control system and An10 wireless presence detectors were ideal for a building of this kind.

The BREEAM assessment method made energy efficiency a priority for the National College for High Speed Rail and with this in mind, CP’s Vitesse Plus lighting control system was used to provide graduated dimming throughout the office and classroom spaces. This helps to minimise energy consumption and cost by making the most of natural light sources. It also allows for all lights to be controlled via a single switch, while individual lights at the front of the class can be turned on and off, making the interactive whiteboard more visible to students.

Official opening of the National College for High Speed Rail in Doncaster

Integral to reducing installation time, and maximising energy savings ishe use of An10 wireless presence detectors. Used throughout the corridors and stairways, the sensors ensure that lighting is activated to full brightness only when the space is in use, while maintaining a dimmed level of lighting for safety purposes at all other times. Overall, this eliminates unnecessary energy consumption, helping to keep running costs as low as possible. Because the sensors are linked wirelessly, this also saved time on installation, reducing the overall complexity of the project.

Recommendations from CP Electronics meant that Briggs & Forrester had a clear set of solutions to work with. Not only did this save time spent weighing up various different options, it meant they could proceed with the installation safe in the knowledge that they were working with the most suitable products for the job. On one occasion, CP recommended using ELV switch drops to eliminate the use of RCBO’s, which would have meant putting containment in order to satisfy 17th edition wiring regulations. Not only was this more cost-effective, the use of 12v cable eliminated the need for RCBO’s on the lighting circuit, saving yet more time for the contractor.

A key requirement of the project was that lighting had to be compatible with the intruder alarm system to allow for lights to be activated in the atrium when the alarm was triggered, and the choice of system made this a possibility.

Nick Richardson, project manager at Briggs & Forrester, who was leading the project, explained: “The support from CP Electronics throughout the project was first class. We were particularly impressed with the technical support that was provided to us.

“Unlike many other projects, where electrical installers are expected to figure out how to get products up and running which can lead to issues further down the line, CP Electronics took the time to explain how they all worked. This allowed us to get the installation and commissioning right first time round, ensuring the project was delivered in the most efficient way possible.”

Completed in August 2017, this allowed the building to be fully-operational in time for the beginning of the new academic year, when it opened its doors to its first intake of students in September.

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