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Building Optimization

The Facilities Maintenance division of Facilities Services has formed a Building Optimization Team (BOT), largely composed of the senior technicians of the former Instrumentation and Controls shop.

Building Optimization Team

 
Back, from left: Kevin Pruess, crew leader; Virgil Belk, supervisor; Kurt Kern, crew leader; and Roger Hale, instrumentation & controls technician II. Front, from left: Ron Cooley, electronics technician II; Mark White, manager; Randy Ford, instrumentation & controls technician II; and Jeffrey McComas, building automation systems analyst.


Working in conjunction with the Facilities Maintenance Engineering and Technical Support experts and Energy Stewards, the optimization group seeks to restore buildings' heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to operate in accordance with their original design.

The BOT selects buildings in phases to undergo an energy audit and performance review. The team also makes low- or no-cost changes to the systems to improve energy efficiency and performance of the buildings.

technician evaluating building systems

Randy Ford checking the calibration of a control component

Latest Technology

Building optimization technicians use the latest measurement equipment technology to measure such media as air flow velocity, chilled water, steam, and hot water flow rates at various points in the building HVAC system. This information is used to determine whether HVAC systems are operating efficiently.

Impact on Building Occupants

Most work is performed during regular business hours and does not affect occupants or operation of the buildings. The work is coordinated with individual building managers through the Energy Resource Conservation branch of Facilities Maintenance.

Measurable Improvements

The BOT documents all measurements and changes to the systems for use by the Facilities Maintenance Engineering and Technical Support group to estimate the total energy achieved by the optimization effort.

What's New!

BOT efforts are underway, providing ways to improve buildings' energy efficiency and performance. The team recently went to the North Office Building (NOA). They identified and made repairs or adjustments that will ultimately provide an estimated annual energy savings of close to $27,000, with a payback in less than one year. The group has also been to other buildings, such as the Ernest Cockrell Jr. Hall (ECJ) and the Jamail Texas Swimming Center (TSC), to find and implement energy conservation measures at the buildings. View the summary below:

Building Implementation Cost Annual Savings Cost Simple Payback (years)
$15,176
$56,331
< 1 Year
$14,304
$26,855
< 1 Year
$20,920
$138,000
< 1 Year
TOTALS
$50,400
$221,186
 

 


For more information on the building optimization program and other energy conservation efforts being performed by the Facilities Maintenance Division, contact Mark White, Building Operation Services Manager, telephone 232-1953.

 

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