Kelda’s new ‘air-powered’​ showers exceed the RIBA’s 2030 Climate Challenge targets

Kelda’s new ‘air-powered’​ showers exceed the RIBA’s 2030 Climate Challenge targets

The RIBA’s 2030 Climate Challenge sets a series of targets for architectural practices to adopt in their designs for new and retrofitted buildings to reduce operational energy use, embodied carbon and water.

The targets are progressive yet realistic, and a vital first step to ensure the construction industry can deliver the significant reductions necessary by 2030 in order to have a realistic prospect of achieving net zero carbon for the whole UK building stock by 2050.


The four Sustainable Outcome target metrics are:

  1. Reduce operational energy demand by at least 75%
  2. Reduce embodied carbon by at least 50-70%
  3. Reduce potable water use by at least 40%
  4. Achieve all core health and well-being targets


The role of showers 

A recent report produced by the SAP Industry Forum for BEIS, the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, has shown that in an average house hot water use accounts for 36% of the total energy demand. According to the Energy Savings Trust 50% of the generated hot water cost is attributed to showering – making showers alone responsible for 18% of the overall energy use.


Average demand by load in a typical dwelling


As fabric efficiency improves so the percentage share of energy and carbon attributed to hot water will increase. Therefore, specifying high-efficiency showers can not only provide significant savings in water and energy consumption, operational costs and carbon emissions, but also offer architects a cost-effective solution to improve building efficiency and achieve compliance – in fact Kelda showers can help to contribute to achieving BREEAM status on projects.


Sustainable water

One of the key design principles for sustainable water is to reduce the consumption of potable water by a minimum of 40%. This means 75 litres/person/day for domestic buildings and 10 litres/person/day for non-domestic buildings.


Currently for showers to meet Part G of the Building Regulations a maximum flow rate of 10 litres/minute is permissible. To meet the 2030 targets this will mean a flow rate of less than 6 litres/minute.


Kelda Technology ‘air-powered’ showers

Kelda Technology are the inventors of ‘air-powered’ showers designed and manufactured in the UK. Their patented technology exceeds the 2030 Climate Challenge targets – capable of providing an invigorating shower experience at 4, 5 and 6 litres/minute.


Over the last four years their innovative showers have been have been vigorously tried and tested in the most demanding real-life environments to ensure they can withstand the pressures of high usage, for example, in the prestigious London Aquatics Centre where mega-litres (millions of litres) of water is used annually. In every installation Kelda’s air-powered showers have demonstrated a significant reduction in water consumption, energy costs and carbon emissions. Equally important there has been 100% user acceptance from members, proving that it is possible to provide a good shower experience at low flow rates.


Kelda Technology’s air-powered shower technology may seem new, but it is the result of over 10 years of development – drawn from cutting-edge aerospace and automotive engineering. In 2013 Kelda were awarded funding from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (now BEIS) via the Carbon Trust and Energy Entrepreneurs Fund to help take the concept into production.


Today, Kelda has a number of global patents and patent applications protecting its technology and are one of very few companies in the world focused on reducing water consumption through innovative shower design.


The Shower. Reinvented.

Satisfaction from showering is not merely about how much water. It is also about the pressure of the water from the shower head. Kelda call this the ‘effective spray force’ and this is where the Kelda shower is so unique.


Conventional ‘aerating’ showers use the Venturi principle to restrict flow and draw atmospheric air into the water through a small hole in the shower head. This aerates the water to change the ‘feel’ of the shower but has no measurable boost in performance. It is completely reliant on the water pressure and in low pressure sites with low flow rates of less than 6 l/min there is almost no aeration – therefore little or no benefit.


Kelda Technology - Air-Powered Shower


In contrast, Kelda’s patented ‘air-powered’ showers use the principles of gas turbine fuel injection technology. In simple terms, each shower features an intelligent microprocessor and powerful digital fan which controls the delivery of water and air to the shower head. Within the shower head, air is propelled through an array of jet-type nozzles forming a low resistance air stream. The laminar water is injected into the air where it accelerates and breaks up into the perfect size droplets (larger droplets are better at retaining heat). Thanks to the low resistance air stream each droplet is able to travel further with more momentum to deliver an increased effective spray force.


Kelda Technology Effective Spray Force


The result is the world’s most efficient shower providing an invigorating shower experience that increases the effective spray force by a factor of two. Unlike aerating showers, air-powered showers are perfect for low pressure sites as the force of the water is dependent on the fan speed and not the water pressure to the building. In the real world, this means a Kelda shower at 5 l/minute will feel like a conventional shower running at 10 litres/minute – meaning 50% less water without compromising experience.


Kelda’s air-powered technology is also safer too. An independent study by the University of Southampton has demonstrated that the spray from a Kelda shower contains much fewer aerosols of a respirable size compared to an aerating shower, offering an increased level of safety in relation to the transmission of waterborne infections such as Legionnaires’ disease.



Kelda’s latest range of ‘air-powered’ showers exceed regulatory compliance, providing an invigorating shower experience at flow rate as low as 4, 5 and 6 litres per minute. This is a significant breakthrough in shower technology as it enables architects to confidently meet the RIBA’s 2030 Climate Challenge targets today.


The installation of Kelda’s air-powered showers into new and retro-fitted buildings is simple. The technology has been independently verified and proven to save potable water, reduce the demand for hot water in a building, and in turn assist in reducing a buildings carbon emission.



Invigorating shower experience

• Exceeds the RIBA’s 2030 Climate Challenge targets

• Exceeds Part G Compliance – significantly reduces water consumption to achieve the highest standards

• Can contribute to achieving BREEAM status on projects

• Cost effective solution to reducing primary energy – reduces DER and DPER

• Eligible for a water efficiency discount – up to £740 per plot (depending on water company)

• Reduced running costs – delivers lifetime annual savings of up to 12.25% off the household energy bill

• Suitable for all dwellings – new build and retro-fit

• Can help reduce build cost and space – allows for smaller hot water cylinders to be specified

• Help increase SAP rating – SAP 11 expectation

• Simple installation – comparative to a power shower

• Contributes towards a major reduction in DHW load

• Provides flexibility in the specification of other fittings to meet compliance

• TMV2 approved thermostatic mixer – provides safe hot water temperatures and prevents scalding

• Meets water supply (water fittings) regulations

• 2 year parts and labour guarantee

• Less maintenance – larger nozzles are less resistant to limescale build-up and blocking

• Simple to use – technology is hidden in panel

• Modern shower panel design – featuring glass fascia