One of the most disturbing questions for students and professors is the problem of heating of classrooms and dormitories. This issue was raised during meetings with faculty deans and heads of institutes. Students' parents are also wondering why auditoria in October and the start of November were, to put it mildly, uncomfortable. They are always asking if it is going to be in the university in winter. The press-office has referred to first vice-rector of Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute Yuriy Yakymenko
– On 5 November connection of the heating to the university buildings was started. So, why did it happen in November instead of October, as it was stated by the city managers?
– The problem of heating in the university has two aspects. And the first one doesn't depend on us. This is connecting and supplying the transfer medium to our networks. It is delivered by CHPP-3, located in the Holosiivskiy district. Only after their providing the transfer medium to local networks, including our network, we will be able to provide the dormitories and university buildings with heat. Unfortunately, this year the campus connection began in the end of October and the university buildings connection – in the beginning of November. CHPP-3 hasn't reacted on our numerous requests on accelerating the start of heating the university.
- The next question is connected to it. The transfer medium seemed to be given, but the radiators in the most buildings aren't hot enough. Why?
– Here you should realize the following. Firstly, due to the appropriate registrations, the transfer medium temperature is adjusted by the supplier depending on the air temperature. That's why the transfer medium won't be hot yet. But there are also another reason – heat losses during transportation it from generation source to us. Trunk and distributive networks are the communal property and their condition mostly isn't good enough, that's why there are heat losses. There is no way for us to influence it. So, we have the transfer medium temperature lower than normal even on entrance. Certainly, it is visible due to low temperature, so that losses also are in proportion to lowering outer temperature.
There are losses on our inner heating networks, too, as they are built according to outdated technologies. One of the problems to solve for us these days is to pass these networks to Kyivteploenergo, as the price we pay for heat is determined in accordance with the difference between temperatures on the entrance in networks, laid in the university and on exit. If our buildings and dormitories were provided by all that heat, it would be logical. But we actually pay also for enormous heat losses. This situation can't satisfy us. If those expenses won't be covered with our budget, Kyivteploenergo would have to do something about these networks.
– Are any measures taken etc least to weaken our dependence on the supplier and his second-rate networks? Is there something provided for it in our university energy-saving program?
– Of course, we try to take all possible measures for heat saving. This is one of the milestone of energy saving. Just because we need to save heat, no matter how much is it generated and given. And this is the second component of the university heating problem. If we heat the environment instead of buildings, we wouldn't be able to talk about any efficiency. That's why in 2012 we wrote and began to follow the energy saving program you have mentioned. It even began to give some results. For example, the year heat energy expenses were reduced a lot, so the money we spent on it reduced, too. Due to this economy we managed to create the energy saving foundation, which funds we use exactly for these measures.
– What are these measures and what was done during five years of this program existing?
– First of all, these measures are changing windows and doors in university buildings (that required almost 14 millions UAH) and in the campus (almost 10 million UAH). The renovation and warming buildings roofs coats almost 6 million UAH. Except for this, walls warming and general building reconstruction took place, too. The best example is the building No.17. It was the coldest in the university and now it is one of the warmest.
Individual heating post reconstruction and installation the automatic equipment there is very important. That works are holding now in seven university buildings.
I also want to tell you the following. Recently our university has connected to the energy saving improvement project within cooperation with energy-service companies, started by the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine with State Agency on Energy Efficiency and Energy Saving of Ukraine. This project was provided for warming of five our buildings – No. 5, 18, 19, 20 and 21. Investors will invest his money in these measures and works and get compensation through heating energy saving. So, again, we will pay them only the cost of saved energy. This way Investors become very interested in getting back money they have invested and all the works would be done better. We also added five our dormetries to this project. So, we will get additional opportunities for money concentration, for solving problems connected with heating university buildings as well as campus.
Of course, we should think taking our reality into account. Unfortunately, that part of heating the university which doesn't depend on us, is basic. We are unlikely to manage providing all our buildings with temperature modes which follow sanitary standards.
That's why we take additional measures about education process organisation during winter period. And that isn't the first time. Differently from many other universities, this allows us not to stop the educational process in winter and not to put lessons off till summer, because this can lower the educational quality, make us put the practice off etc. We don't let it happen. Look: January allows us to work in usual mode, as it includes two weeks of exam session, and exams are held in a few classrooms. Holidays will last till 10, February. This way, we have built educational process schedule to have no lessons in January and ten days of February. Except this, we have divided all classrooms in all university buildings into two categories: category "A" are those classrooms where temperature mode will be kept in accordance with sanitary standards with no difference what the weather outside is, and "B" category are those classrooms, which can't be provided with such mode due to their technical state and condition. So due to the university order, when in classrooms in "B" category the temperature lowers, the lessons must be held in classrooms of "A" category. We already have enough places, we only have to change lesson schedule. All faculties and institutes must follow it. And the experience shows us that such measures are effective enough.
But it is worth mentioning one another problem not to be missed in this context. Most of our buildings were built in 60-70th of XX century, when there weren't any strict requirements about energy efficiency. At that time transfer medium was considered to be almost costless. According to this we have another one reason of coldness on our buildings: university buildings are built in the way, that only 60% of their volumes are heated by heat radiators, and 40% of heat should go from heat ventilation. Unfortunately, heating ventilation system doesn't work. There are two main reasons for this: firstly, they take extremely much energy, secondly, their maintenance also costs a lot. So we can look for whom to blame but that is what we have. That's why we try to implement the energy efficiency program and look for partners, take some measures etc, as I've said earlier.
– And the last question , which comes from our conversation. A few years ago the own energy-generating station project won the start-up competition "Sikorsky Challenge". That station could strongly change the situation. Will it happen?
– Yes, that project was introduced by the company “Nature technologies”. It covers about 290 million UAH. It was planned to be built on the Borshchahivska Street. That station had to produce electricity in co-generation mode for outer consumers, and heat power- for university buildings and dormitories. However, this project nowadays isn't implemented in connection with the land dividing problems. The point is that Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute can't dispose its land for building of commercial objects. That's why the problem of own thermal power plants is still relevant for us. Still we are looking for the solution.