As a Utilitiesman, you can expect to become involved in the installation of duct and/or ventilation systems designed to provide conditioned air or to remove less desirable air from a given space or facility. When sheet metal is to be fabricated into system components, the Steelworker provides the expertise. When duct board is used, fabrication and installation may be tasked to the Utilitiesman exclusively.
This chapter provides some key knowledge to aid you in the identification of types of duct and ventilation systems, their installation, and factors you must be aware of in determining the sizes required to meet specified building requirements. Keep in mind that the term air conditioned refers to air that has been cooled, heated, dehumidified or humidified, or any combination of these.
To deliver air to the conditioned space, you need air carriers. These carriers are called ducts. They are made of sheet metal or some structural material that does not bum (noncombustible).
Duct systems are also classified as high-pressure or high-velocity ductwork and low-pressure or low-velocity ductwork. The term high-pressure or high-velocity ductwork includes ductwork systems and plenums from the fan discharge to the final high-velocity mixing boxes, or other final pressure-reducing devices or any air supply system served by a fan operating with a static pressure range of 3 inches to 7 inches of water column (WC).
High-velocity or high-pressure systems with fan static pressures of 3 inches WC or greater are defined as high pressure. Usually the static pressure is limited to a maximum of 7 inches WC, and duct velocities are limited to 4,000 feet per minute (fpm). Systems requiring pressures more than 7 inches WC are normally unwarranted and could result in very high operating costs. Systems with velocities more than 4,000 fpm peforms satisfactorily when all duct fittings are carefully designed and installed. However, velocity pressure losses are excessive and velocities more than 4,000 fpm are not recommended.
A high-velocity double-duct system begins with a high-pressure fan of class II or III design any conveys air through sound-treated high-velocity ductwork connected to sound and pressure-attenuating mixing units. Connections to the outlets of the reduction units are treated as low velocity.
Smaller sized ductwork, using higher velocities, permits conveyance of air to areas limited by construction and reduces floor-to-floor height. Round ductwork generally provides the greatest strength, tightness, and economy. However, oval and rectangular ducts can be used when large risers are involved.
A necessary component of the high-pressure system is the mixing box or unit. Its function is to blend air at two different temperatures for proper delivery to the rooms. This requires special pressure-reducing air valves at both hot and cold inlets, mixing baffles to prevent stratification of air, and sound attenuation treatment to absorb noise generated by the air valves.Continue Reading