Fuel energy saving systems supplied and installed by Maxsys are providing improved efficiency to three steam-raising boilers at The Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend, a district general hospital within the Bro Morgannwg NHS Trust. The combined effect of the investment is a significant reduction in the organisation’s carbon footprint along with a 5.1% saving on the hospital’s boiler fuel bill.
Climate change is one of the greatest economic, social and political issues of our time. The demand from customers, suppliers and the public is changing quickly with respect to environmental protection. Private and public organisations of all types and sizes need to be aware of the effect their business is having on the environment and in doing so manage their ‘environmental footprint.’
“As part of our commitment to the Carbon Trust, a private company established by the Government in response to the growing threat of climate change, we wanted to examine the efficiency of our central steam-raising boiler plant,” says Energy Manager Ray Davies. “As a public organisation and one of the most modern hospitals in Wales we are 100% supportive of trying to accelerate the UK’s move to a low carbon economy – we have our own carbon management programme.”
That said, the hospital still has a serious responsibility to its patients to provide steam for space heating throughout the Bridgend complex, particularly in the winter months. With this in mind the hospital began researching technology that would help improve the efficiency of its three Thorn EMI boilers.
“We were introduced to Maxsys at a Welsh environmental engineering user group meeting and subsequently visited Kidderminster hospital, where the Fuel System was operational,” explains Mr Davies.
Three bespoke Maxsys Fuel Systems were installed by Maxsys in January 2007 into the 3” gas supply lines feeding the burners on the hospital’s steam-raising boilers, which are deployed in rotation to ensure even wear and tear: when one boiler in on load, another is on hot standby while the third is off and cold.
The boilers are equipped with Weishaupt burners and are primarily run on natural gas. Even though all three boilers already had fully modulated operation to maximise efficiency, the system still had an approximate annual usage of around 14,000,000kW, equating to outlay of around £200,000.
Working closely with Princess of Wales Hospital, Maxsys contracted ABB to independently assess the current metering and monitoring facilities available on the plant before analysing a preliminary sample of data that enabled the generation of a ‘Test Protocol’ document outlining the performance characteristics of the plant and detailing a list of variables to be monitored.
“With only two boilers out of three burning gas at any one time, it was agreed that the hospital would collect the agreed process variables twice a day, seven days a week,” explains Mr Davies. “This data was supplemented by a daily boiler log that detailed any extraordinary activities such as breakdowns, unexpected maintenance and unscheduled blow-downs.”
Within the Test Protocol, ABB defined that there should be a minimum of 80 days’ data points supplied before and after installation of the Fuel System to be able to provide a robust evaluation of the project.
ABB’s analysis of the post-installation data for February-March 2007 (in comparison with pre-installation data collected November-January 2007) showed that the gas consumption was lower by 5.1% for an identical amount of steam generated. This equated to a substantial saving in terms of gas and costs, not to mention a significant reduction in CO2 emissions.
“We are very pleased with the results of the analysis and satisfied that Maxsys has achieved what it claimed the Fuel System could do to improve our boiler efficiency and reduce our carbon footprint and fuel expenditure.”