An industry on display
The 2012 ASHRAE show took place in Chicago and was the biggest ever held. Over 39,000 contractors, engineers, distributors, facility managers, manufacturers, reps and other HVAC professionals came to find out about the newest in products and innovation. Two Grundfos employees – Bill Beard and Melvin Pipes – share their views on this year’s trends and tendencies at the trade show.
Two professionals’ view on the HVACR industry
The 428,000 net square feet of booth space on the exhibit floor is crowded and noisy and leaves no doubt that new things are happening in the heating, air conditioning and refrigeration industry this year.
Bill Beard and Melvin Pipes of Grundfos share their views on 2012 trends and on Grundfos’ prominent booth at the show.
Bill: This year’s Grundfos booth is a real departure from what we have done in previous years. We wanted people that came to the booth to understand that we are leaders in technology and an innovative company, both in our products and the way we manufacture them plus in the way we go to market.
So we decided to go in a very different direction for ASHRAE this year. Our booth consists of a cube in the center closed off by four tall walls. On the side of one wall is a big countdown clock that counts down to something BIG that is going to happen a year from now. I can’t reveal what it is yet – but this year has been about creating a buzz for next year when we have a very big announcement to make.
Inside the booth a lot of our E products are on display – our MAGNA, our CRE and a teaser pump – a product that doesn’t exist right now, but is there to get a response from contractors and engineers on our vision of tomorrow’s pumps and how water is controlled in a building in the future. And everyone we have talked to has been very excited about this vision.
"A central theme here this year is really energy reduction, especially for owners of commercial buildings. Their vacancies are higher than ever so they have to be careful not to lose money on ineffective systems."
Bill Beard, National Sales Manager of the Grundfos Commercial Buildings Group
Melvin: Everyone I have talked to at ASHRAE agrees that the focus right now is applying cutting edge technology to the products and to building management. The trend is that every piece of equipment should have technology in it that communicates back to the building automation system.
Energy efficiency is also a very large theme. There is already legislation for HVAC systems in buildings that require minimum efficiencies, so there is definitely a push there. The focus is not just on the building but also on the construction process – producing less waste, using more natural resources etc.
Bill: EISA, the Energy Independence and Security Act is an American motor mandate that demands a certain efficiency on motors over a certain horsepower. And instead of waiting for this mandate to take effect, Grundfos chose the proactive approach and redesigned all of our motors to make sure that they met the new, stricter standards. Every new circulator that we come out with is more efficient than the one before – that’s a mandate for our design people.
Bill: A central theme here this year is really energy reduction, especially for owners of commercial buildings. Their vacancies are higher than ever so they have to be careful not to lose money on ineffective systems.
Melvin: And tenants are much more focused on leasing green spaces than they were before.