Faenza, Ravenna - Italy
148 beds
ZEPHIR System and Hydronic System
Year 2010


San Pier Damiano Hospital

High standard, advanced technology

Specialised in Orthopaedics, Traumatology, Surgery and Ophthalmology, the San Pier Damiano Hospital is one of the over 20 hospitals of GVM Care & Research. It offers high standards of care and cutting-edge technologies for in-patients, along with day hospital and day surgery patients.
The challenge

GVM ICare & Research's Code of Ethics commits all its operators to promote the well-being of each individual patient. Therefore, comfort and the quality of air played a decisive role in the full refurbishment of the systems used within the wards, a necessary investment for a first-class facility established almost 50 years ago.

As this was an existing building, the new climate control and air renewal systems needed to be discreet.

More importantly, the works needed to be carried out without suspending healthcare activities and related services or cause inconvenience to patients.

This is why the Client and the Professionals decided to carry out the works gradually on a floor by floor basis.

However, choosing the system to install also depended on other imperative needs, starting from the strict hygiene standards applying in hospital facilities.

The ability to ensure continuity in operation was another important critical decision factor.

Finally, financial aspects were carefully taken into account, both in terms of the initial economic investment and, above all, running costs, which were crucial in the balance sheet of a facility operating 24/7.

san pier damiano hospital

The building

  • Concrete building with 7 floors
  • 148 beds
  • 12 dialysis units
  • 4 intensive care units

san pier damiano hospital

The team

  • Promoter GVM Real Estate (Italy)
  • System design P.D.M. Progetti, Italy
  • Project managed by GVM Real Estate, Italy

The solution

A hydronic system was chosen for the year-round climate control needs of the wards.

The terminal elements consist of active induction chilled beams suitable for this specific application, as they do not have air filters and devices to collect condensation.

The primary air supplied to the chilled beams comes from two Clivet ZEPHIR2 systems with fixed-point supply control set at 20°C in winter and 21°C with a specific humidity of 11 g/kg in summer. The active thermodynamic recovery unit with reversible heat pump operates all year round on the load of renewal air and in cooling mode it also reduces internal latent loads with three capacity control steps.

Both systems are fitted with the hydronic Extrapower exchanger connected to the existing hot or chilled water mains. It accurately controls the supply temperature in heating mode and can further increase dehumidification in particularly demanding conditions in summer.

In cooling mode the supply temperature is accurately controlled by the modulating post-heating function with hot gas recovery. 

Renewal air is treated by the in-built high efficiency electronic filters that capture nanoparticles, PM10, bacteria and pollen.

The air supply and return ducts of the two systems have special manually-operated bypass dampers to ensure the supply of primary air to all the chilled beams, even if one of the two systems stops operating.

san pier damiano hospital

The system

  • 2 Clivet ZEPHIR2 primary air systems with thermodynamic energy recovery and an overall air flow rate of 18,000 m3/h, along with fixed-point supply control in the wards
  • More than 70 active chilled beams with two pipes and a two-way regulating valve for variable water flow rate systems
  • The system is completed by two air-condensed liquid chillers, three high efficiency boilers and a centralised supervision system

The results

The solutions adopted, namely the high dehumidifying capacity and electronic filtering, have noticeably increased the quality of air in the wards, as noticed by users and operators.

The system proved to be able to work non-stop also in very severe weather conditions with outdoor temperatures between -15°C e +40°C.

The gradual execution of the works in one area at a time avoided disruption to healthcare services. The second primary air system was purchased and installed a year after the first one, which also spread the investment. The air flow rates were set in relation to specific needs on a case-by-case basis, until the current final set-up was identified.

The choice of stand-alone primary air systems allowed the client to keep existing cooling and heating fluids and reduce their use to a minimum. Therefore, it was not necessary to invest in a new heating and cooling unit.

Works on the roof were minimal too, thanks to the system's very compact design and the presence of just two pipes for the fluids.

The high energy efficiency and positive experience led GVM Care & Research to also choose Clivet to increase the efficiency of the chilling system, where one of the existing chilling units was replaced with a SPINchiller2 with modular Scroll technology with a capacity of over 500 kW.

Hydronic System

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