Technical Glossary - V

Variable Air Volume System (VAV System): A mechanical HVAC system capable of serving multiple zones which control the temperature maintained in a zone by controlling the amount of heated or cooled air supplied to the zone.

Vectors: Organisms that carry disease-causing pathogens. At landfills rodents, flies, and birds are the main vectors that spread pathogens beyond the landfill site.

Ventilation: The process of supplying or removing air by natural or mechanical means to or from any space. Such air may or may not have been conditioned or treated.

Vertical Integration:
An arrangement whereby the same company owns all the different aspects of making, selling, and delivering a product or service. In the electric industry, it refers to the historically common arrangement whereby a utility would own its own generating plants, transmission system, and distribution lines to provide all aspects of electric service.

Virgin Materials: Any basic material for industrial processes that has not previously been used, for example, wood-pulp trees, iron ore, crude oil, bauxite.

Visible Light Transmittance:
The ratio of visible light transmitted through a substance to the total visible light incident on its surface.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs):
Compounds that evaporate from many housekeeping, maintenance and building products made with organic chemicals. These compounds may be released from the products both in use and in storage. In sufficient quantities, VOCs can cause irritation and some are carcinogenic and are suspected of causing or exacerbating acute and chronic diseases. The health effects of VOCs at levels found typically in commercial indoor environments are still not completely known and continue to be a point for further study.

Volt: A unit of electromotive force. It is the amount of force required to drive a steady current of one ampere through a resistance of one ohm. Electrical systems of most homes and office have 120 volts.

Hard to describe, but just as it takes pressure to move water through a pipe, it takes voltage to move electricity across a wire. Transmission lines usually carry power at 500, 230 or 115 kV. It is “stepped down” into a lower voltage (69 kV and lower) by transformers at substations and along distribution lines for final delivery to homes and businesses. It comes into your house at 220 volts, and most of your household plugs carry 110 volts.

Voltage Of A Circuit (Electric Utility):
The electric pressure of a circuit, measured in volts. Usually a nominal rating, based on the maximum normal effective difference of potential between any two conductors of the circuit.

Volumetric Wires Charge:
A type of charge for using the transmission and/or distribution system that is based on the volume of electricity that is transmitted.