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Solutions for Wholesome Workplaces

Here are ideas and solutions that specialists propose, to help achieve environmental sustainability, productivity, health & hygiene, cost efficiency, and safety & security

By Mrinmoy Bhattacharjee

Laminates
Century Plyboards has developed ‘first-in-the-industry’ Design Library for its laminates range, to enable architects and designers visualise their design ideas and import them into their technical drawing software such as AutoCAD and 3Ds Max, explains the company’s executive business head for decorative Shankho Chowdhury. “We went a step ahead and created CenturyPly Studio app where all the designs can be seen with a click of a button on a smartphone. Just take the picture of the application area/furniture and see the imposed desired laminate design to make the right choice.”

 

Window Systems
According to uPVC window systems specialist Deceuninck’s country manager Satish Kumar, interior designers and architect should evaluate the Visual Light Transmission (VLT) required inside the office space and select the opening sizes and types of glass accordingly. Next to be considered is heat gain and glass with the appropriate Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) chosen. Subsequently, U value and air-infiltration should be considered. “We have systems from 2.4W/m2K to as low as 1.3W/m2K with conventional systems, and lower than 1W/ m2K for passive housing systems. Depending on the air change per hour needed for the office space, the specifier can then choose the system with appropriate air leakage to ensure that the air quality is maintained,” Kumar says, adding that noise is also an important factor for overall wellbeing. “Based on the external environment we can recommend the glass thickness, insulated glass, and triple glazing to bring down the noise levels to a necessary comfort level.” He informs that Deceuninck is building awareness about performing windows which can cut off heat, reduce noise, restrict dust infiltration, be watertight during monsoons, and still look aesthetically pleasing. “This is the need of the hour,” he states. He adds, “Many people prefer light ventilation during evenings after being in an air-conditioned room the whole day. Our tilt-and-turn systems offer the best solution to ventilate the room. We also have systems with peripheral ventilation to get fresh air into the room.”

 

Furniture
Hettich‘s VP-sales & marketing Gaurav Bajaj avers that furniture designers can maximise space utilisation, enhance productivity and boost ergonomics for their clients by using Hettich’s highly evolved solutions spectrum in fittings. “Systema 2000 and SysTech are ideal for space optimisation,” he advises. Both are prefabricated drawer systems with a top pencil tray that has neat bifurcations for storing stationery. The second level is a normal drawer where anything can be stored. The third level is a large storage for hanging file frames. “The system helps in creating neat and organised spaces which maximise storage as well as increase productivity of the users, as everything is easily available to the user of the pedestal.” Informing about other products, Bajaj says that Hettich’s Big Org@Tower is a “smart” example of utilising the space between two workstations, which normally gets wasted. Organising the internals in different configurations ensures maximum space utilisation and enhances user productivity. LegaDrive, with egaDrive Systems Desk support, enables adjustment of the height of the worktop to any level through the use of an electric motor. This gives the user flexibility to work in standing or sitting position. “This fitting greatly improves the ergonomics of the furniture.” OrgaWall Organiser System keeps the desk tidy and uncluttered. “It is space-saving in the sense that it utilises the area which would have otherwise got no utility; at the same time it increases the productivity of the user by making things accessible, and in view.”

 

Plumbing
Plumbing specialist Sloan’s country head Anup Kumar Tripathi states, “We take responsibility through every part of the product lifecycle, from the sourcing of raw materials through usage, consumption, maintenance, and recycling.” He informs that Sloan’s plumbing solutions can be used to gain USGBC LEED v4 points and/or comply with CALGreen and other building codes. “Many of Sloan’s products not only help the customer meet LEED’s 20% baseline reductions but can also help in achieving extra points as outlined in LEEDv4 WE credit 2.”

 

Flooring
Specifiers should consider Forbo’s vinyl and carpet solutions if they are looking for floor coverings that are environment-friendly and ensure better indoor air quality, according to Forbo’s managing director Hardeep Singh. He asserts that the company abides by its commitment to sustainability that centres on all aspects concerning health, wellbeing, and comfort, with regard to its products and services for present and future generations. “All our products are manufactured using green or renewable energy, and the EPDs for each of them are available on the website. Products such as Marmoleum have Cradle-to Grave and Tessera Carpet Tiles have Cradle-to-Cradle certifications.”

 

Lighting
Wipro Lighting, under its IoL brand, offers intelligent lighting technology that enables users to control lighting through connected devices such as smartphones and tablets. “This helps to enhance employee comfort, productivity and safety through personalised control of workspaces, and track performance by tapping real-time updates on lighting system status,” avers VP and business head Anuj Dhir. He explains that the company’s solutions also provide historical data and analysis to continually improve operations and experiences, thus helping facility managers gain insights and in turn manage spaces effectively. “The operating cost of lighting in commercial buildings is estimated to be significantly high, and smart and connected lighting provides an efficient and cost-effective solution.” Dhir says that specifiers can be spoilt for choice since Wipro brings them a variety of products. VergeLED is a reddot 2017 product design winner backlit luminaire. OpusLED features a unique floating spherical diffuser and surrounding light chamber that subtly introduces circular geometry into the ceiling plane. PieLED conforms to ‘Right Light’ philosophy for creating cheerful, vibrant and high-performance workspaces. AslimlineLED is “one of the slimmest” products for better light efficacy and offers a blend of aesthetics and functionality. AxeonLED is an up-down suspended linear lighting product for offices. Dhir asserts that Wipro is the pioneer in bringing Li-Fi technology to India and is capable of delivering high speed and secure data transmission through its LED luminaires.

 

Lighting Control
In most office buildings lighting accounts for 39% of annual electricity consumption Lutron’s country manager-sales for India sub-continent Ripu Daman Sharma advises how organisations can adopt light control strategies to save energy.

 

Dry Wall
Birla Aerocon’s products are “ideal” if architects are keen to build superior green construction, avers Dhirup Roy Choudhary, managing director and CEO of HIL. The company offers cement sandwich panels, fibre cement boards, and designer boards for drywalling and fast-track applications. It has AAC blocks, block jointing mortar, and ready-mix plaster and wall putty for wet walling. Stressing on the green quotient of the products, Choudhary says that the brand’s unique five-way green philosophy ensures that its products and processes are environment-friendly from end to end. “We begin by choosing green raw materials with a low carbon footprint; and process them using a green manufacturing process that produces zero effluents, by-products, and emissions. We also have a green energy profile with 30% of our energy needs being met from renewable sources. Finally, our end products are also green, and can be reused and recycled for minimal environmental impact.” ')}

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