The Frank Fenner building is a small scale institutional faculty building which archived a 6 star Green Star Office Design Rating. The design aimed to integrate with existing site conditions, and to be an example of sustainable design, balancing innovation with common design and construction practices.

The configuration of the building footprint, wrapping around an internal courtyard and adopting a narrow floor plate, creates a high quality internal environment by accessing natural light, fresh air, and views to the outdoor environment, allowing for a strong personal connection to the external environment for both Staff and students.

The building makes use of external shading, double glazing and high performance glass as well as internal blinds to minimise direct solar gain while still providing good levels of natural daylight.

A 33kW photovoltaic array will be installed on the building roof. It will produce electricity that will be feed directly to the building’s main distribution board. It is expected that the photovoltaic array will produce 43,800kWh of electricity each year. At times when the building electricity demand is less than the amount being supplied by the PV system, the excess electricity will be fed back to the substation for use in nearby buildings, thereby directly reducing the greenhouse gas emissions of other adjacent buildings.

The building air conditioning system is based on the central energy plant of the site. Chilled water and heating hot water, extended from the central plant, provide heating and cooling to a secondary chilled water and heating hot water loop.

In turn, the secondary loops provide cooling and heating to zoned fan coil units providing fresh air with pre-tempering to the heat recovery units. 4-pipe active chilled beams are fitted and zoned to individual rooms with air flows designed to match the room loads.

The HVAC design also incorporates natural ventilation capabilities. All active chilled beams (ACBs) are fitted with switching panels enabling zone switching when natural ventilation conditions are satisfied. Zones are fitted with LED indicators for indication to occupants when it is suitable to open the windows.

Chilled beams have been used at ANU Fenner School to provide heating and cooling using water to transport heat. The space is cooled through radiant and convective exchange where heat is exchanged between surfaces of differing temperatures, and cool air descends freely from the beams instead of being blown into the spaces by fans. Ceiling surfaces are normally in the range of 15-18°C which provides a much more pleasant radiant cooling effect for occupants.

Outdoor air is provided via a ducted heat recovery ventilator air system consisting of intake louvres (at the façade of the building), constant volume fans, pre-tempering cooling and heating coils and ductwork reticulating down the corridor. Branch outdoor air ducts are provided for each room connected directly to the chilled beams. The minimum air quantity will be based on a 150% improvement in AS1668.2 minimum requirements to meet the Green Star Requirements.

Motion sensors and daylight dimming will be used to reduce energy consumption from lighting.

Energy used for lighting is further reduced by providing manually controlled task lighting to each desk thus allowing a lower level of luminance required from the main lights in the building.  The base building lighting also uses a DALI lighting control system.

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