Indian company shows way with green building HQ
Photo courtesy of Telegana Today
Green is the new black in real estate. Green buildings, therefore, have become the latest slogan for most developers, including government organizations, which are now transforming their old buildings into green ones to go eco-friendly, reduce their environmental footprint and, in the process, cut costs.
In Hyderabad, India, one government organization has not only initiated steps to have its office turngreen,but is spreading the good deed across a wide range of buildings under its umbrella, reports Telegana Today.
South Central Railway was the first in the Indian Railway to hit upon the idea of the unique natural daylight pipe technology. This, apart from turning to solar power, providing timers to switch off lights and fans when not necessary and installing LED lighting wherever possible, has put SCR on eco-friendly tracks with its headquarters, Rail Nilayam, soon to be declared a green building. The natural daylight pipe technology provides for natural illumination without heat gain into the building.
It was first provided on the seventh floor of Rail Nilayam, with the concept now being spread to various office buildings of the SCR,hospitalsand workshops.
So far, about 316 natural daylight pipe systems have been installed all over the SCR zone. Last year, when there were 239 systems, the expected savings was more than Rs 7 lakh. This is expected to go up this year. The installation costs will be recovered in a little more than six years, with the life of the daylight pipe system to be about 30 years, officials said.
How it works
Daylight pipe technology works on the innovative principle of collecting daylight through a dome, which has a prismatic cut forraybandingtechnology and sends sunlight down the pipe. Light gets reflected inside the pipe and at the end point, light is obtained through diffuser for uniform illumination.
The air inside the pipe acts as an insulator, so heat gain inside the room is very low. The technology is gaining popularity, especially in office spaces, since it is believed working in sunlight reduces the strain on human eyes.
Tapping solar power
One area that SCR has been concentrating on is the tapping of solar power for meeting energy needs of railway office buildings, stationsand railway crossings among others.
“The zone is fast implementing a plan to considerably enhance useof solar power on its network. 87kWpcapacity of solar panels on stations/service buildings/pumps/LC gates/street lights were installed during 2017, totaling to 2202kWpcapacity over SCR,” the company’s general manager, Vinod Kumar Yadav, said. “Solar water heaters of 1,300 liters per day capacity have been installed on service buildings, enhancing the cumulative strength on SCR to more than 2 lakhlitresper day.”
The latest addition to the initiative was the commissioning of a 225kWpon-grid solar plant at the Hyderabad station. This is expected to save around Rs 25.6 lakh per year.
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