“Tapping the existing systems for the labs with fume hoods would be cost-prohibitive, because circulated air, not single pass-through air, is what technology needs,” Strine says. “Besides, the chillers were shut off on cool-weather days.”
Outside air condensers would work fine for some areas of the building, he adds. But in the innermost rooms housing technology, the line set would be too long to make outside units viable.
So we looked up, to the building’s penthouse, situated at the center of the facility. There, we could tie into the process water loop, which operates 24/7/365.
At first, we considered a fan coil unit with a water-to-water heat exchanger. But the only cooling available was the process loop, which ran at 74 degrees. Not enough to keep the technology running.
“We felt like we had part of the answer, which was using the penthouse,” Strine says. “Then it occurred to us – a water-cooled condenser would allow us to capitalize on the process water loop, with the right temperature.”
The water-cooled condensers we were familiar with were expensive. But here, diligence paid off. We ultimately found a high-quality affordable system with non-precision air conditioning that would do the trick.
“The new system has worked very well,” Strine says.