Human performance and decision making directly influenced by 'personal well being'

A British privately owned family firm has established a niche capability for leadership through its radical new approach to human interface working conditions in specialist, arduous, tactical and mission critical operating environments.

Stream Environmental, a north London-based heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) specialist, has carved an unique position designing, developing and delivering bespoke system solutions which control climate, temperature and humidity in cabins or enclosures, confined or restricted spaces and even immediate ‘body proximity’ suits.  The company has already successfully resolved a range of very complex requirements such as cabin visibility on marine rescue craft and its latest semi-portable ‘ManPAC’ for soldiers, actually delivers thermally controlled air directly to a body-worn layer.

The latest soldier system ‘ManPAC is designed for personnel operating in extreme conditions – of heat or cold – and comprises a body worn layer within which a series of micro-duct circulation channels deliver conditioned air flow to various parts of the body.  The ‘body-suit’ can be worn under tactical clothing – or specialist apparel such as body armour, blast suits or CBRN protection.

The air source unit is an extremely compact high performance heat exchanger which is attached to the ‘body-suit’ via a snap-in / quick release flexible hose, connected at the waist.  It may be carried (subject to power availability) or integrated into a vehicle or other base platform.  A further variant is being developed for integration into blast seats.

Pre-production systems have been successfully demonstrated to relevant military trials units and agencies both in the UK and overseas.

Stream Managing Director, Gavin Cantley says, “We create environments which are conducive to people being able to work at peak and optimum levels.  That includes personal focus, effectiveness and safety – so getting climate right is actually about helping to get the best from people.  We also embrace a number of other technology disciplines alongside advanced HVAC, such as acoustics, noise, vibration and harshness (NVH), and health and usage monitoring systems (HUMS).  This enables us to develop integrated and science-based solutions for extremely challenging operational requirements”.

 Another area of its civilian work where Stream believes its expertise and capability could be transferred for military applications is ‘silent’ HVAC and noise management for confined space enclosures, shelters and containers.  “Our project portfolio includes integrated systems for recording studios – where the air conditioning has to operate effectively, but with no noise intrusion whatsoever”, says Cantley. “We have also installed systems in listed buildings, where the equipment effectively has to be ‘covert’ to retain the character of the original structure.  These and other examples mean that we have the capability to think creatively as engineers – and to evolve solutions which meet both unusual and unconventional applications – a fairly normal situation with bespoke military requirements.

Source: Stream Environmental
Date: Jun 10, 2014