ÅF delivers super-efficient energy modelling for new Swedish hospital


The modelling of the hospital building and laboratory and has led to significant time and cost savings

Environmental ambitions are high for the New Karolinska Solna (NKS) University Hospital, which is in the process of being built. The plan is to achieve environmental certification at Gold level according to LEED as well as Swedish certification system Miljöbyggnad. Skanska has entrusted ÅF with the energy modelling required for LEED certification and were delighted with the results.

Energy simulation is an important factor in many environmental certification systems for buildings. When it comes to LEED, energy calculations typically account for some 30% of the overall assessment.

ÅF has performed building simulations for all phases of the NKS project and the latest ones were recently passed by the certifying body entirely without comment, which is very rare indeed.

The two recent energy simulations performed by ÅF concern a laboratory building and a patient hotel forming part of the New Karolinska Hospital in Solna. LEED certification involves sending results for expert assessment by the US based Green Building Council. It is standard for the body to respond with a number of remarks, stipulating that that some aspect of the energy model is changed, or more calculations submitted, as part of a process that normally involves several costly iterations. However, in this case, it will not be necessary, as both simulations have passed entirely without comment.

'It is highly unusual to have energy simulations pass in the very first attempt,' says Björn Qvist, business area manager at ÅF. 'By avoiding an extended certification process, we have enabled the customer, in this case Skanska, to save time and money.'

Energy modelling of laboratory buildings is especially complicated. In these cases, there are many factors to consider, in order to meet ASHRAE standards for LEED simulations. For instance, laboratories have unusual and complex ventilation systems, says Dr Yang Chen, Who is in charge of ÅF’s energy modelling for Skanska.

'We did not get a single remark on our energy model or on our energy score! I do not think that this has ever happened before, for as long as I have worked with LEED. Very well done!' said Klara Gunnarsson, Skanska’s LEED coordinator for the NKS project.