Success Stories

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GOSS ENGINEERING SUCCESS STORIES

FACILITY AND UTILITY PLANNING

Project

California Institute of Technology Utility Infrastructure and Planning

Situation

The California Institute of Technology (Caltech) includes approximately 125 buildings with over 3 million square feet of floor space on and around the main Caltech campus including laboratories, classrooms, offices, conference rooms, dormitories, and maintenance shops.

In preparation for future growth Caltech commissioned GEI to complete a Utility Infrastructure and Expansion engineering study to review their infrastructure’s ability to support the addition of new buildings and renovations of existing buildings. In addition, the campus was also experiencing chilled water (CHW) distribution system low delta-T issues and CHW distribution system bottlenecks and flow restrictions.

Process

As part of this study, GEI and its team of electrical and civil engineering consultants, obtained and reviewed all available distribution plans to understand the existing campus operations as well as walked the entire 2.5 mile underground tunnel system to verify the utility system shown on the as-builts. A survey of all the campus buildings was completed by the GEI team to analyze the existing building equipment to evaluate the cause of the low chilled water delta-T issues. As part of the process, GEI created calibrated hydraulic models to analyze distribution constraint and to develop cost effective infrastructure expansion options.

The utilities evaluated:

  • Chilled water
  • Steam and condensate return
  • Compressed air
  • DI water
  • Industrial cold and hot water
  • Heating hot water and domestic water
  • Electrical
  • Sewer

Based on GEI’s evaluation, most of the infrastructure systems, with continued good maintenance and or/minor modifications, appeared to have enough capacity to meet the campus requirements, with the exceptions of the Chilled Water and Electrical Systems. The chilled water system was short of production capacity and the distribution system was experiencing bottlenecks. The campus electrical system was old, considered obsolete, of poor design (single feed), and forced to operate without required maintenance.

Results

GEI developed various expansion and retrofit concepts for the chilled water, heating water, industrial water, domestic water, and de-ionized water as well as chiller plant expansion options to accommodate future campus expansions.

Today, Caltech has implemented some of GEI’s chilled water distribution recommendations to eliminate the choke points, which will decrease the hydraulic head on the distribution pumps. Lower hydraulic head leads to energy savings due to less power used by the distribution pumps. Caltech is also in the planning phases to expand their tunnel system as well as to add new buildings.

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GOSS ENGINEERING SUCCESS STORIES

CENTRAL PLANTS

Project

Step 4 Central Chiller Plant Expansion, University of California, Irvine

Situation

The University of California, Irvine (UCI) continues to construct new buildings each year and anticipates significant growth through 2012. As new buildings are added and older buildings are upgraded, UCI is developing systems that are both cost effective and efficient.

As part of a long-term master plan, UCI initiated the “Step 4 Central Plant Expansion,” and hired GEI to complete a systems evaluation, to develop a master plan, and to complete the construction design of a system that supports both their current and future needs.

Process

To ensure the new system could meet both UCI’s current and future needs, a full site audit was completed. This audit included an evaluation of the space available for expansion and the amount of cooling capacity that could reasonably be installed within this footprint. GEI also reviewed the potential for a basement or piping gallery below the proposed building addition to achieve a better layout for expansion and service.

Once the systems evaluation was completed, GEI developed complete construction documents for a $3 million central plant expansion and chiller replacement project. This project included a new 2,500-ton chiller and a 4,000-ton architectural-type cooling tower.

Results

The present central plant currently serves approximately 51 campus buildings with a combined gross area of nearly 3.1 million square feet. The buildings served vary in age from less than five years old to more than forty years old. The campus-cooling load is approximately 11,400 tons and currently, there are no known issues with cooling and distribution capacity.

UCI is currently in the planning phase of adding more buildings through 2012 and continues to work closely with GEI to expand their district energy systems.

Other projects GEI has completed for UCI include redesign and retrofitting of UC Irvine’s McGaugh Hall laboratory HVAC system; Steinhaus Hall laboratory mechanical and HVAC design; and retrofitting of the Engineering Tower Buildings laboratory facilities.

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GOSS ENGINEERING SUCCESS STORIES

THERMAL ENERGY STORAGE SYSTEMS

Project

Loma Linda University Thermal Energy Storage and North Utility Plant Design

Situation

Loma Linda University (LLU) is a growing educational health-science institute, founded in 1905 by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. LLU has an enrollment of more than 3,000 students from 80 countries and nearly all 50 states. The academic programs feature 109 degree and certificate programs in the area of Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, Public Health, Allied Health as well as graduate studies. In addition to the teaching and research functions associated with the general campus, the University also maintains a hospital, children’s hospital, and emergency room.

Currently, approximately 24 buildings are provided with chilled water via the campus “Power Plant.” Chilled water is distributed in underground tunnels from the Power Plant to the campus buildings for space cooling. Steam is also distributed from the Power Plant to many of the buildings for space heating and domestic hot water production.

Based on studies prepared by GEI between 2002 and 2005, as well as additional campus planning activities, LLU elected to increase production and distribution capacity by increasing the chilled water temperature differential (difference in chilled water supply temperature and chilled water return temperature), replacing existing absorption chillers, adding new electric centrifugal chillers, and adding a Thermal Energy Storage (TES) tank on the north portion of the campus.

Process

The project is scheduled to be completed in multiple phases over the next few years. The first phase that is already underway serves as the design and planning phase for the TES tank and the North Utility Plant, respectively. Planning deliverables include a complete site assessment, development of a work plan and a wide range of site options. This phase also included utility distribution expansion and retrofitting.

To ensure an aesthetically favorable, operable, and resiliently stable design we have partnered with an architect, and electrical and structural engineers. We are also working closely with the LLU staff to provide a TES system that not only satisfies LLU’s requirements but also exceeds their expectations.

Results

At project completion, GEI envisions a system that operates efficiently, provides energy savings, has adequate cooling and heating capacity for future campus expansions, and is a system that displays GEI’s expertise and, most of all, shows GEI’s dedication to client service.

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GOSS ENGINEERING SUCCESS STORIES

DISTRIBUTION SYSTEMS

Project

Los Angeles Harbor College Infrastructure Design

Situation

In 2001, Proposition A was approved to provide the Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) $1.245 billion dollars to retrofit, upgrade, and build new buildings as well as bolster the utility infrastructure to increase educational opportunities, raise student achievement, and improve health and safety conditions.

In response to this proposition, Los Angeles Harbor College assembled a design team to provide a utility distribution system including Goss Engineering who served as the mechanical engineer on the project.

Process

The design team worked together to develop a design that included an underground utility distribution system that loops around the entire campus to serve the existing buildings as well as future buildings.

GEI designed the chilled water, heating hot water, and natural gas distribution systems for the entire college campus. The design provided piping stub-outs for future building connections as well as a stub-out for the future central plant.

GEI also provided project management assistance during construction by responding to requests-for-information (RFIs), reviewing equipment submittals, and attending construction coordination meetings.

Results

Today, distribution system construction is complete and in full operation. GEI continues to serve as a key member of the design team.

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GOSS ENGINEERING SUCCESS STORIES

LABORATORIES

Project

University of California, Irvine, Steinhaus Hall Mechanical/HVAC Design

Situation

University of California, Irvine (UCI) Steinhaus Hall is a 6-story, Type-1 construction, approximately 107,000 square-foot laboratory building constructed in the early sixties and is UCI’s original laboratory building. The building has 5 floors plus a partially buried basement. The building occupancy consists primarily of research laboratories, teaching laboratories, classrooms, and offices.

The laboratory building was experiencing thermal discomfort issues and the existing HVAC equipment was old and inefficient. UCI commissioned GEI to perform a mechanical HVAC study to assess the building thermal discomfort issues and analyze the existing HVAC equipment. Based on the study, Steinhaus Hall required a retrofit of the existing air-handling units and exhaust systems.

Process

The HVAC study led to an HVAC upgrade design project wherein GEI was the prime consultant. The project involved the installation of 5 high-plume exhaust fans serving the laboratory fume hoods, manifolding all the existing fume hood exhaust stacks, and replacing an air-handling unit and heat-exchangers. The project required thorough coordination with the structural engineer to support the new high-plume exhaust fans on the roof due to the increased weight.

GEI also provided project management assistance during the construction phase responding to requests-for-information (RFIs), reviewing submittals, and was on-site for construction meetings, assisting the UCI project manager. The total construction cost for the project was approximately $3.5 million.

Results

Today, Steinhaus Hall’s occupants have no thermal discomfort issues. Other benefits include energy savings due to retrofit of the existing air-handling unit fans with variable frequency drives, and increased ease of maintenance with the replacement of 51 existing fume hood exhaust fans with 5 high-plume exhaust fans.

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GOSS ENGINEERING SUCCESS STORIES

HEATING, VENTILATION AND AIR CONDITIONING (HVAC )

Project

University of California Riverside, Science Laboratory I

Situation

The roots of the campus date back to 1907 when the California State Legislature established the Citrus Experiment Station to conduct research on the agricultural problems of Southern California. Graduate work was conducted early in the station’s history, and today, graduate education is central to its mission.

The University contracted with an architect to design a new laboratory building, Science Laboratory I. The design project was a multi-disciplinary use building for research and for teaching chemistry, biological and environmental sciences. It is a 42,000 square foot, three-story building, with 5 organic teaching labs on the first floor, and 10 research labs on the second and third floors.

Under the prime architect, GEI was contracted to serve as the mechanical engineer on the project and provide HVAC, plumbing, and fire protection design.

Process

Working closely with the architect and owner team, GEI developed an HVAC design to support laboratory and multi-disciplinary uses. The HVAC design provided air-handling units, package rooftop units, and fan coils for heating and cooling. The exhaust system included variable-air-volume and used phoenix control valves and controls to serve the laboratory fume hoods.

GEI also provided project management services during the construction phase responding to requests-for-information (RFIs), reviewing submittals, resolving change orders, and was on-site for construction coordination meetings. The total construction cost for the project was approximately $18 million.

Results

Today, Science Laboratories 1 is fully occupied providing students an excellent environment for researching and conducting labs. All of the HVAC equipment is operating properly and efficiently.

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