Monongahela Valley Hospital

Summary

Monongahela Valley Hospital (MVH) is a 280,000 sq ft, 226-bed, full-service health care facility with 1,100 employees, including a 220-member medical staff representing more than forty specialties. In addition to the plethora of services offered, MVH offers resources and support to the community. The 100-year-old hospital strives to provide the highest quality care to its patients, as well as comfort and convenience to family members and friends.

Challenge

The aging chiller plant at Monongahela Valley Hospital, installed in the 1970s, was nearing the end of its useful life. With the hospital running 24/7, and the nature of its work, facility managers knew it was critical that the chiller plant be upgraded quickly. The chiller plant upgrade and integration of the control systems would need to be performed while MVH continued to use the existing equipment, in order to adhere to the hospital’s zero cooling system downtime requirements. In addition to keeping its patients and staff comfortable, the hospital set a goal to lower energy costs.

Solution

Monongahela Valley Hospital called on the expertise of Trane to provide a complete turnkey solution to meet the challenges of its chiller plant replacement.

Modular design speeds installation
To save installation time, a packaged pre-built modular chiller plant was delivered to the site in three sections and assembled within a new pre-piped and pre-wired enclosure. Designed to fit in the tight space requirements outlined by the hospital, the compact chiller plant was placed on a concrete pad in a small area outside the building. A steel structure was built above the new plant enclosure to hold the two cooling towers.

New chillers improve efficiency, reliability
Two 400-ton high-efficiency Trane CenTraVac™ centrifugal chillers were installed. The robust design of the Trane CenTraVac centrifugal chiller, with only one moving part, makes it one of the most reliable in the industry and the right choice to meet the hospital’s zero cooling system downtime criteria. The CenTraVac chiller requires less refrigerant to operate and its semi-hermetic motor design, along with low-pressure refrigerant, reduces refrigerant leaks, assuring a clean, cool operation for maximum performance. The quiet, vibration-free operation of the chiller also helps the hospital maintain a restful environment for its patients.

VFDs, heat exchangers provide energy savings
The chiller plant includes an energy-saving heat exchanger to allow free cooling in cooler months, and variable frequency drives (VFDs) on the CenTraVac chiller, the chilled water and condenser water pumps, and the cooling tower fans. The VFDs reduce energy usage, extend motor life and help to maximize the comfort of patients and staff.

Control system allows easy monitoring
A Trane Tracer™ SC control system automates the chiller plant and integrates fully through BACnet® with the existing third party vendor’s HVAC controls system already used by the hospital. The web-based controller with graphics provides an easy-to-use interface via the web to monitor and control the chiller plant from any location. The management tool helps improve efficiencies, reduce energy costs and increase comfort. Facility managers use the Tracer SC to optimize energy efficiency with chiller sequencing routines, coordinate the pump and cooling tower to reduce costs, and use diagnostic messages for troubleshooting.

TIS ensures fast issue resolution
A Trane service contract ensures the peak performance of the equipment and reduces service costs with a regular maintenance plan versus emergency service calls. Trane® Intelligent Services (TIS) Active Monitoring provides peace-of-mind to building managers with constant monitoring of systems, alarm notification, diagnostics and analysis by Trane technical specialists. Continually collecting and interpreting data from the building equipment and controls, TIS allows responsive action should an issue arise.

Results

Monongahela Valley Hospital replaced its aging chiller with a new Trane high efficiency chilled water plant, which includes two Trane 400-ton CenTraVac™ chillers, a free cooling heat exchanger, and VFDs on the chillers, water pumps and cooling tower fans. A new Trane Tracer SC controller was integrated into the existing control system for easy monitoring of the fully-automated chiller plant. The upgrades, which were completed without disruption to hospital operations, are reducing energy and maintenance costs, increasing efficiencies and helping to ensure a comfortable indoor environment for patients and staff.

"The efficiency of the chilled water plant has exceeded our expectations,” said William Burnett, director of engineering and maintenance, Monongahela Valley Hospital. “The second chiller was not even needed during our July heat wave.”

 

About Monongahela Valley Hospital

A packaged pre-built modular chiller plant installed at MVH includes two 400-ton high-efficiency Trane CenTraVac centrifugal chillers.

A Trane Tracer SC controller was integrated with existing controls without a single moment of downtime.

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