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An All-Star RoadShow – A Summary of the Event

The three day fast-track roadshow on legislation, energy, carbon savings and legal compliance got underway in Glasgow at one of Star's installations, the UK's largest indoor snow slope SnowFactor at Braehead, before going on to Leeds and finishing up in Reading on Thursday 26th September.

It drew a varied number of sectors that included food & drink production, banking, storage and distribution, public sector, leisure, energy, building services, FM, construction contractors, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, retail and consultancy.

Four members of Star's senior management team presented the following succession of topics:

R22 phase out / Legislation/ Refrigerants/ H&S:
David Blackhurst - Director of Star Technical Solutions

Energy Efficiency/ Total Life Cycle/ Free Cooling:
Rob Lamb - Group Sales & Marketing Director

Heat Recovery / Free Heating / Renewable Heat Incentive / Carbon Reduction Commitment/:
Dave Pearson - Director of Innovation

Maintenance/ Reduction of operation costs and energy consumption through site monitoring:
Andy Smith - Branch Manager at Star Manchester

A Q&A session followed each presentation and attendees were invited to share their own experiences. Delegates broke up into groups to hear about their respective sector specific success stories.

Personnel from the company's different branches attended the event to provide an expert view to those seeking advice on specific issues. David Blackhurst answered a question on the legality using R22: "To be clear - it's not illegal to continue to use R22 in your refrigeration system after the end of 2014. You just can't service it and top it up with R22. There are a number of strategies that companies are adopting to manage the reality, which is that a lot of companies are going to continue to be using R22 after the end of the next year. They are working on strategies to allow them to be doing that legally. Star will not, at the end of next year, be charging more R22 into systems, because that will be illegal - but we will be advising on different strategies."

Exhibition Area

Each event also included exhibition areas to illustrate, in simple terms, how cooling and heating systems work. Participants had the chance to view two scale model replicas of a cooling system running on HFCs and one using natural refrigerant ammonia. Oil samples from different machines proved the importance of monitoring these for the health and efficiency of the system.

Andy Smith developed a small working refrigeration unit which demonstrated the principles of cooling and heating. He explained: "The compressor is moving the heat from one side of the unit to the other by turning the compressor. The temperature difference increases the faster the handlebar on the side is turned. Hence, the more work done, the more heat is moved from one side of the system to the other." This concept was easily grasped as attendees put their hand at each side of the system - one was freezing, the other one was hot.

CPD Diplomas & Draws

At the end, all delegates were awarded a CPD diploma and a draw for an iPad Mini revealed 3 lucky winners: Gavin McVicar from BASF, Andrew Yeatman at NHS Blood & Transplant, and Barry Gorman from Yeo-Valley. The prizes were donated by Bray Controls, Dean & Wood and Coolers and Condensers.

Finally, attendees were left to take what was learned at the event and put it into practice.