Chilled Water Plant Assessment Improves Classroom University Building

Our Connected Building Service Analytics platform delivers critical insights to building performance. It’s where our team connects, collects, organizes, and analyzes your facility’s HVAC & buildings system’s data to determine inefficiencies and opportunities for improvement. But how does this process work in real time? Read more about our process and how our implementation steps analyzed the chilled water plant of a large university in this case study.

The Opportunity

Universities are always looking for new ways to reduce spending and work smarter. A large university reached out to our team to determine if there were opportunities for savings in their chilled water plant. Chiller plants serve as the source of a buildings centralized cooling system. The classroom building selected by the client as a pilot project uses Qty (3) water chillers – an 1800 ton machine and Qty (2) identical 800 ton chillers deployed with a variable primary plant and variable speed secondary pumps.

The Assessment

Our team deployed the BuildingLogiX analytics platform to extract data from the existing BAS system. The system data was collected, organized, stored and analyzed to produce the first of several Assessment & Recommendation reports for the client.

The following are a few of the chiller plant operating principles considered in this assessment:

Steady-State Control

Plants and their equipment operate at peak efficiency when thermodynamic changes occur gradually. Rapid temperature and flow changes impact heat exchange and compressor cycling, reducing equipment efficiency and reducing its useful life.

Maximize Chiller Efficiency

Manufacturer, size, and operating conditions factor into a chiller’s true kW/ton versus design efficiency. Chillers operate most efficiently at higher cooling loads and with lower condenser temperatures. Since the chillers make up the largest electrical load in a typical university building , maximizing their efficiency often has the greatest impact on reduced energy usage.

Balance Chiller Runtime

For universities and other large campuses, chillers are the largest and most expensive elements using electricity. Properly sharing the load by rotating chillers maximizes equipment longevity. The two chillers analyzed in this case study are identical and should have similar performance metrics. Balancing their runtime and performance increases the efficiency and lifespan of the equipment.

Avoid Low Delta-T Syndrome

Low delta-T syndrome occurs when the difference between incoming and outgoing water temperature is too small. It’s a common problem for chilled water plants and greatly decreases system efficiency and causes higher utility consumption than necessary. Most owners do not realize they are suffering from Low Delta-T syndrome.

Reset Condenser Water Temperature

Condenser water control is an important factor for chiller plant efficiency. Condenser pumps are often the largest pumps in a water-cooled chiller plant, and optimizing flow and temperature setpoints enhances performance. Poor condenser water control is one of the most common areas where plant efficiency decreases. Which means the chiller plant has to work harder and consume more electricity to produce the needed comfort.

Maintain Critical Building Demands

The most important function of a chiller plant is to maintain temperature and humidity requirements. Any strategies employed shouldn’t impact the AHU’s ability to maintain its basic setpoints.

The Results

Our analysis determined that implementing better control sequences for the condenser water would reduce operational spending by as much as $27,000 a year. Just these improvements create cash flow positive impact from BuildingLogiX Connected Analytics. With the help of our expert engineering team, our client is now on the right track to optimizing their chiller plant operations. While initial savings are at hand with condenser water control improvements, we believe there will be additional opportunities for savings as more data and analysis of plant operations unfold in the weeks and months ahead. the .

How BuildingLogiX Provides Energy Management Solutions for Universities

College and universities face various issues when improving their energy efficiency, these include:

Building Diversity

No two buildings are alike. Age, location, and the direction they face impact energy consumption. Our Connected Building Services (CBS) continuously gather and analyze information about your BAS’s efficiency to give you guidance on improvement opportunities.

Increased Campus Size

Many universities continue to expand their Campus, but an expansion in square footage doesn’t always lead to increased maintenance staff. In fact more buildings and expanded work loads often put pressure on the team that can lead to trouble. CBS allows your service maintenance team to work more efficiently and as a result more productively.

Reduced Budget

Advances in system technologies and reductions in staff and budgets make HVAC facility maintenance a challenging task. When partnering with BuildingLogiX, you gain access to strategic energy management solutions that provide you with real-time reporting on potential system inefficiencies. Our solutions help you identify problems while they’re still minor, which allows you to increase productivity while reducing costs.

Benefits Provided by CBS

Our solutions are ideal for universities because they offer the following benefits.

Generate Cost Savings

BuildingLogiX Connected Building Analytics solutions provide long-term cost savings by pinpointing your inefficiencies, allowing you to repair minor issues before they develop into costly problems. Clients enjoy utility reductions of 14% to 18% and additional operational savings of 11% to 16%.

Longer Asset Life

Replacing HVAC and other energy equipment is expensive and time consuming. By implementing CBS and consistently addressing minor issues, you extend your system’s lifespan and minimize costly replacement projects.

Connect Your Campus with BuildingLogiX

Are you ready to take advantage of our innovative technology? Contact BuildingLogiX today and see how our solutions enhance your system’s performance.

Contact BuildingLogiX for an Assessment Today

BuildingLogiX has been enhancing building operations for various industries since 2006. We pride ourselves on helping our clients avoid wasteful utility spending by pointing out opportunities for system improvement. Contact us today if you’re interested in learning more about our strategic energy management solutions.