Emergency Power for a High Rise

A few years ago a customer approached us with a project that they were about to take on in Southern California. They were looking at building a 600 unit, residential high rise apartment complex complete with some major retail stores in the ground floor. They were required to provide an emergency power generation system for this building and this is where Collicutt got involved.

The Design Challenge

There are always challenges to sort through with any project and this one was no exception. Besides the usual design constraints associated with projects in California like strict emissions compliance and seismic ratings, this project had some unique aspects that had to be addressed.

  • First, the generator would have to be installed in the parking garage of the building prior to the construction of the upper floors of the building. This put us on the critical path for project construction. We had to deliver on time!
  • Second, because the overall building design was still in process, we needed to allow for late changes prior to placing the generator into production in the event that we would need to upsize or downsize the generator and its components
  • Third, because of the seismic requirements and the fact that the generator was to be installed inside the building, the fuel tank had to be equipped with ballistic rated retainer walls. Basically, this is a double walled fuel tank that is filled with cement between the inner and outer wall to provide a puncture proof solution for fire rated indoor applications
  • Fourth, because the unit was located indoors, it needed to be equipped with a special exhaust silencer to meet the city sound requirements for indoor applications.
  • Finally, the installation of the generator would need detailed planning, coordination, and safety oversight. Due to the construction site location, offloading and placing the generator would require local road closures with the added challenge of dealing with overhead power lines. This meant that we would have to coordinate a crane and the trucking company within a very tight timeline while ensuring we had the time for a safe lift!

The Solution

Our Collicutt team worked closely with our customer throughout the design phase of this project. As the design progressed the customer realized that their electrical load had increased. Because of this, we upsized the original 1000kW generator to a 1250kW unit designed to provide enough critical power to meet full load requirements with a reserve factor of 10%. The model we selected was a 16V2000 DS1250 with IBC rating, complete with a roof mounted DPF and a UL2085 rated fuel tank.

In addition to this, there were various automatic transfer switch changes and breaker adjustments that the customer requested and we were able to accommodate within the time constraints. We were also able to coordinate the appropriate air quality permit for the customer so that their generator has all the permits required for operation.

The end result was that our customer received the generator at site on schedule. Our trucking and crane contractors were able to safely unload the generator, lower it two stories into the parking garage, and remove their equipment within the allotted road closure permit constraints.

It was a great team effort and now the building program can go on!

 

For more information on this or any other power generation solution, contact us via email or at the number below:

1-888-682-6888 or info@collicutt.com

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Emergency Power Solution for a Television Network Expansion!

A television network in Southern California was recently renovating and expanding their facility. As part of this expansion, they required an emergency power generation system.

As most people know, California has a very unstable power grid so most businesses need to have their own back up power system. This requirement is even more important for a television network as they simply cannot lose power during a power grid outage . . . this is when their viewers need them the most!

Complications

To complicate things, California has some of the strictest emissions and building code requirements in North America.

California emissions are controlled and regulated by 35 separate air quality management districts. Many of these districts have unique emission control requirements so it is critical to understand them and apply the correct solution. The wrong application can result in costly fines and mitigation requirements. In addition to this, the generator for this application needed to be IBC rated . . . basically constructed in a way to ensure that it can withstand and operate after a seismic event.

Design Process

Understanding these constraints, when the TV network started their design process, they reached out to Collicutt. Our professional sales and design teams worked with them and their engineering contractors to define the building electrical loads, design constraints, and their construction schedule.

The Solution

The outcome from this process was the generator shown in the photo above: a 1250kW, fully enclosed, IBC rated, MTU 16V2000 DS1250 solution complete with a Rypos filter to handle the strict emissions requirements. We were able to deliver this unit within the designated construction schedule.

When we heard that their construction schedule was delayed due to COVID, we were able to store the generator at our secured location for a number of months. During this time we provided them a temporary rental generator to make sure they had backup power until their facility was completed.

When we got the call that they were ready for their generator, we arranged for the crane and transport shown in the photo above. We delivered the unit and came back to site for commissioning and start up. Once the start up was complete, we provided training for the customer, removed the rental genset, and “gave them the keys” to their new power generation system!

For more information on this or any other power generation solution, contact us via email or at the number below:

1-888-682-6888 or info@collicutt.com

 

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How to Implement a Fuel Blending System

Air quality management districts, AQMDs, are continually updating their standards for reciprocating engines and the resulting emissions. Although the changes are made with the best intentions (e.g., reducing airborne pollutants), these changing standards often impose large technical challenges and require equipment upgrades or replacements which adds unexpected costs for business and industries.

Wastewater Dilemma

This is the situation one of our wastewater treatment customers found themselves in when a change in their local AQMD regulations instigated a large change in what was allowed for natural gas combustion.

This wastewater facility had three large CHP systems that used off-gas from the wastewater (produced through a digester process) as the main fuel source and natural gas as a backup fuel source. The CHP system provides electrical power for the plant, electrical power for the utility grid, and heat for the digester. The system had a combined electrical/mechanical efficiency of around 90% while removing GHG emissions from the environment so it was critical that it continue to run!

The challenge that the new AQMD ruling created was that the allowable natural gas consumption in their engines was changing from 100% to only 49%. However, the engines were originally designed with a dual fuel system that could run on either 100% natural gas or 100% digester gas but not a blend of the two fuels.

This change in allowable fuel ratios caused a big issue with the plant operations! (more…)

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