mercial and residential projects strategically
positioned in one of the Triangle’s fastest
TECO, Burns & McDonnell
Complete System Expansion
at Texas Medical Center
Thermal Energy Corp. (TECO) Board
Chairman Paul G. Bell Jr. pulled the lever
at May 17’s ceremonial startup of TECO’s
new chillers, which were installed as part
of its $377 million expansion project
on the Texas Medical Center campus in
Houston. The rest of the board members
and guests looked on. TECO and Burns
& McDonnell hosted the dedication cere-
mony, “The Energy Behind What’s Next,”
in TECO’s new East Chiller Building to
celebrate completion of the system expan-
sion, Master Plan Implementation Project
– Phase One (see cover story).
Behind the scenes, TECO operators
simultaneously started the chillers. As the
chilled-water valve opened, guests could
hear water rush through the pipes in the
ceiling above. A video feed enabled guests
to see the cooling towers start to spin atop
the building as the chillers began operation.
During the luncheon, U.S. Rep. Al
Green, Texas- 9; Stephen K. Swinson, chief
executive officer and president of TECO;
Greg Graves, chairman and chief execu-
tive officer of Burns & McDonnell; Bell;
and Dr. Richard E. Wainerdi, president
and chief executive officer of the Texas
Medical Center, spoke to the more than
200 in attendance. Guests toured TECO’s
expanded Central Plant site following
More event images and project
information, including a construction
video shown at the ceremony, are avail-
able at http://pitch.pe/146014.
University Business: Time is
Right for On-Site Renewable
An online article in the June 2011
edition of University Business concludes
that it’s an opportune time for colleges
and universities to consider developing
on-site renewable energy systems, including combined heat and power facilities,
solar photovoltaic and wind power sources.
“Colleges, Universities, and Renewable
Energy: A Perfect Match” notes that higher
education institutions spend nearly $10 billion on energy each year. Combined with
the social conscience of students and facul-ties, that campus energy demand is motivating many institutions to decrease their
carbon footprint and energy consumption
by implementing renewable energy projects – which also have the potential to
generate substantial cost savings.
The authors point out that with
cogeneration colleges and universities can
eliminate up to 20,000 tons of air pollutants each year for every 7. 5 MW of CHP
facility installed. The article explains direct
and third-party ownership options for
renewable energy systems and discusses
the availability of government incentives
and subsidies for developing such projects.
To read the full article, go to http://tinyurl.
Courtesy Burns & McDonnell. Photo Paul Howell.
Burlington Studies District
Heating System Feasibility
As reported May 11 in Seven Days,
a community group called the Burlington
District Energy System (BURDES) has
unveiled a new engineering study that has
revived a decades-old plan to heat the city
of Burlington, Vt., using excess heat from
a local wood-fired power plant. The report
demonstrated the technological feasibility
of tapping waste heat from the Burlington
Electric Department’s McNeil Generating
Station to heat water for distribution in the
Old North End and downtown area via a
new district heating system.
Opened in 1984, the McNeil plant was
originally designed to produce both power
and steam heat, and its boiler is large
enough to meet both needs. In the past
20 years, at least three other studies have
also proposed capturing and reusing waste
heat from the plant.
The $140,000 engineering study,
conducted for BURDES by St. Paul-based
Ever-Green Energy, offers three alternatives
for building out the district system and
expanding it incrementally. It has not yet
been established what entity would build
and operate the system. To read the full
article, go to http://tinyurl.com/6l3krcg.
TECO Board Chairman Paul G. Bell Jr.