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How UK leisure centres could save £70 million each year

Leisure facilities across Britain could save as much as £70 million between them by improving energy efficiency by just 10 per cent, according to multinational power and automation company ABB.

ABB’s Energy Efficiency Manager John Guthrie reported that swimming pools present a particularly good opportunity for saving energy due to the massive volumes of water and air that must be circulated for the comfort and wellbeing of visitors.

A standard 25-metre swimming pool can hold up to a million litres of water, which undergoes a constant process of recirculation, heating and cleaning to ensure it’s safe for users. Meanwhile, a pool’s air handling system runs continually in order to precisely regulate temperature and humidity.

Such systems depend on electric motor-driven swimming pool pumps and fans, the energy efficiency of which may be vastly improved if coupled with variable-speed drives (VSDs). Mr Guthrie points out that a motor running just one fifth slower with a VSD will consume 50 per cent of the energy it would at full power.

Swimming pool pumps and air handling systems operate at full capacity during peak times, but in quieter periods or when the pool is unoccupied, VSDs allow circulation systems to run at a reduced rate. By using a programmable ABB drive, leisure centre managers can apply different settings depending on visitor numbers, meaning energy consumption can be minimised and electricity bills significantly lowered.

The same applies to air handling systems, which if run at a constant rate unnecessarily will cause high energy consumption, more frequent servicing requirements and reduced equipment lifespan.

Gibbons Engineering Group is a founder member of the Authorized Value Provider scheme, which means we’re specially approved to supply, install and offer associated services for ABB drives.

To discuss how VSDs could save you money on your electric motor-driven applications, contact Gibbons’ Drives Manager Alan Roberts on 07966 468430 or email

HVAC Services, Humidification, Variable-Speed Drives, Electric Motors, Pumps & Controls, Ultraviolet Solutions

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