Texas Tech’s Leaders Recognized The Need For Detailed Monitoring and Engineering Oversight to Achieve Fully Optimized Energy Solutions – and It Paid Off
Texas Tech University implemented operational improvements that yielded significant energy savings: however – even with the improvements – university leadership recognized that real optimization would require detailed monitoring and engineering oversight. Instead of the one size fits all model, they sought an innovative energy solution that would provide its knowledgeable, experienced managers and plant operators with independent analysis of performance data and recommendations upon which they would base their operating decisions.
In early 2014, Texas Tech contracted with TDIndustries and utiliVisor- a third-party energy advisory firm – to analyze the real-time operating data from the university’s plants and recommend the most efficient operating strategy. utiliVisor’s unique approach to energy solutions takes a holistic view of energy performance while analyzing the operation of each piece of equipment.
For universities seeking to optimize the performance of complex district utility plants, third-party, independent energy monitoring and oversight offers a cost-effective means of realizing greater energy efficiency and lowering operating costs over the plants’ life cycle. Monitoring offers an essential risk-management strategy leading to verifiable performance
improvements and durable energy-consumption reductions, freeing up system capacity and improving redundancy and associated savings.
The Texas Tech University System includes two independent district chilled water and steam plants that serve the main Texas Tech University Campus, and the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center/University Medical Center. Not only were the two dynamically different chilled water plants monitored, but also two independent, high-pressure, superheated steam plants, a back-pressure turbine that generates electricity, and a water-side economizer (free cooling) as part of the overall package. Since no two campuses are alike, the plant analysis would require expertise and flexibility as well as a solution that would be equally as flexible.
The approach provides a continuous stream of historical and current system-wide information, alerts and recommendations to optimize plant efficiency, including equipment dispatching, chiller sequencing, variable chilled water pressure control and distribution pumping system, and variable condenser water flow. It also provides a predictive model
that forecasts predicted load, flows, energy, efficiency, and weather.
To date, Texas Tech’s cumulative savings is $2.06M in energy costs. The savings exceeds both the university’s initial capital investment in the program and the performance guarantee under its three-year contract in 16 months.
Universities have complex systems that require experts who know how to navigate central plants and large distribution systems. If you’re looking for significant savings and a streamlined, auditable process personalized to the specific needs of your campus, contact us.