Hot water supply is essential, especially in a cold weather place such as Genting Highlands. And hot water consumes energy! The main challenge is how we produce and consume energy resources effectively without polluting environment, or at least, to minimise its harm towards the environment. This is the concept we hold to design hot water system for First World Hotel & Resort.
With 7,000 rooms, First World Hotel is the largest hotel in Guinness World Records. Instead of implementing the traditional diesel boiler, the new Tower 3 which comprises of 1286 new rooms, has taken a giant step ahead to use renewable energy solution, and Intrix heat pump is chosen.
Simply because it is the largest hotel in the region, large hot water system size is by default. Now this achievement is being recognised by Malaysia Book of Records (MBR) and Intrix is awarded as “The Largest Renewable Energy Hot Water System” in the country.
Heat Pump, A “Fridge in Reverse”
Why heat pump? Heat pump is designed based on 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, that harvests free and renewable heat energy from ambient air at lower temperature, and upgrades it to useful temperature by adding a small amount of energy. In layman terms, heat pump is a much cheaper and more eco-friendly hot water solution that harnesses “free heat” from the atmosphere by running a huge “fridge in reverse”.
In fact, heat pump system is not a new technology especially in Europe countries and some ordinary local places such as Kuala Lumpur. However, to implement heat pump system on mountain tops like Genting Highlands is rare. Due to its unique location, Intrix encountered geographical challenges such as space constraint, weather, etc. What make it more challenging is the large size of system required by First World Hotel Tower 3, which is 6 times larger than a typical 5 Star Hotel. Intrix heat pump is designed to be space-saving while reducing complication in plumbing, wiring, control design and maintenance procedures.
In Malaysia, the normal weather conditions in places like Kuala Lumpur is “Hot & Humid”; while in colder countries, it is “Cold & Dry”; but in Genting, it is “Cold & Humid”. Therefore, it gives a very unique Sensible Heat and Latent Heat ratio. Not only that, the rapid climate change in Genting cause drastic drop of temperature and the humidity could reach at saturation point. Most of the conventional hot water systems cannot handle these drastic changes, even a standard air cooled chiller may eventually trip or damage. It does not only affect the system reliability, it also affects the system efficiency.
Intrix SMART One Pass Heat Pump System
In order to mitigate those challenges, several innovations were derived from this project. Intrix had developed a (large size) SMART Control heat pump system with Building Management System (BMS) that was capable to detect and adjust rapidly with continuous energy optimisation feature. This has now become Intrix product/system’s standard feature because it also improves product/system performance implemented in other places like Kuala Lumpur.
In order to guarantee energy efficiency (the Coefficient of Performance, COP), and to maintain consistent output despite the rapid climate change, Intrix patented One Pass technology was deployed. To ensure absolute system reliability, instead of using backup heater or traditional N+1 redundancy like chillers do, Intrix has invented Failsafe Self Recovery System that provides N+N redundancy, without having to increase system size. Thus, it is not only efficiency guaranteed but also space-saving to enable the system to be fitted in tight rooftop space.
Despite all the obstacles, Intrix has overcome the challenges with professional collaboration between all parties, including First World Hotel management and engineering team, KTA Tenaga Consultant team, and KS Yap Contractor team. In fact, the project was completed half a year ahead of schedule.