University Hospital

Augusta, Georgia

University Hospital Energy Savings - American Energy Assets

University Hospital is a 1,400,000 square-foot healthcare facility in Augusta, Georgia. It has undergone a number of expansions, most recently a heart center currently being commissioned. Due to a need to reduce operating costs, the Hospital engaged American Energy Assets to reduce the Hospital’s energy consumption.

The Hospital’s cooling system is served by two interconnected chiller plants, a waterside economizer heat exchanger, and a new additional chiller being brought on-line with the Heart Center expansion. A major factor in overall efficiency is the proper staging of the various chilled water systems. The hospital also has a number of very old air handlers, along with some brand new equipment.

AEA implemented its On-Track Program on January 1, 2009 to diagnose and correct inefficiencies within the facility. During initial energy assessments, AEA identified the following opportunities for improvement:

  • Inconsistent and inefficient coordination of chilled water systemsUniversity Hospital Pipes - Healthcare Savings - American Energy Assets
  • Newer air handlers that have not been commissioned properly
  • Old air handlers with failing control devices
  • Over-pressurization of parts of the chilled water distribution system
  • An extensive Building Automation System with incorrect programming and minimal trained staff

Based on engineering surveys and in-depth analysis of data gathered from the Building Automation System, AEA and University Hospital have made the following modifications through the first year of the program:

  • Re-programmed air handler control sequences to reduce chilled water usage and reheat energy
  • Adjusted automatic chilled water balancing valve sequences to properly control system pressures
  • Corrected damper actuators that were inoperative or out of calibration
  • Began a program of regular on-site training sessions with Hospital staff

$430,000 Healthcare Energy Savings - American Energy AssetsThrough the first 13 months of the program, AEA and University Hospital have generated almost $430,000 in energy cost savings, without any major capital expenditures. On top of this, their energy usage index has decreased from 240 to 210 kBTU/SF. The buildings Energy Star profile also improved from a baseline rating