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Featured Stories

Boilers: The Front-Loading Lowdown

The forward march of progress in terms of basic equipment and controls sophistication has made the combination of condensing and non-condensing boilers more attractive than ever. Still, you can’t just grab one of each and expect miracles.
March 1, 2014
Front-end loading is gaining momentum as a boiler system design strategy, as higher-efficiency condensing boilers replace older boiler technology and system control intelligence continues to improve
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Building Automation

Controls Optimization: No Longer Optional

Updated codes continue the push for better controls work as high performance edges further into the mainstream.
March 1, 2014
At one time, it might have been acceptable to view controls as a “necessary evil” with little attention given to the details of design including sequences and commissioning
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Motor Selection HVAC Design

Who actually specified that motor? Did they keep the entire system in mind or were they simply specifying one component at a time? And will that spec require over-speeding the motor?
March 1, 2014
Often, an HVAC system is designed by the selection of individual components and not by a whole-system approach
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Commissioning

Unsampled Systems

Choosing not to sample every system can be a gamble, but here are some ways to lower your risk.
March 1, 2014
Over the past two months, this column has addressed the issue of sampling systems for field functional performance testing
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Restoring The Low Limit For Indoor Relative Humidity

The research is consistent over the years, and the cost of low humidity continues to rise. Even our increasingly computer-oriented lifestyle exacerbates the problem.
February 1, 2014
Industry leaders realized hundreds of years ago that their processes and machines operate best when the indoor relative humidity is maintained at an optimum level for their process
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Problems Found In The Field: How Retrocommissioning Can Solve Them

The symptoms are familiar: hot and cold complaints, higher-than-expected costs, etc. Here’s a look at how the retrocommissioning process should work to tackle these and other developments for your facility.
February 1, 2014
In the last few years, major cities throughout the country have passed new energy code requirements mandating that commercial buildings perform regular retrocommissioning audits.
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Seawater Warms Up Marine College Building

“Think Globally, Design Locally” could’ve been the slogan for this opportunistic design on the Maine coast.
February 1, 2014
Geothermal and VRF components, along with a key design revision and even an underwater heat exchanger, buoyed this project as it sailed toward a flexible and sustainable finish.
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Biomass CHP Serves Ohio Veterans Well

Sure, it was an award-winning first biomass design for the VA. And yes, it’s a big efficiency improvement.
February 1, 2014
Just as interesting, though, were the judicious choices along the way to maneuver tricky valve logistics, use CAD to pre-empt other problems, and occasionally recondition instead of replace. These moves reduced first cost, saved installation time, and freed up valuable floor space on top of the project’s long-term savings.
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Trust But Verify

After 40 years and other engineering studies, a large university building still suffered from humidity problems. Our intrepid author dug into the data and the dark corners of the building in pursuit of the culprit — or culprits?
January 25, 2014
Sebesta Blomberg was commissioned to study a humidity problem for a 400,000–sq-ft library at a university in the Midwest a few years ago.
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Malfunction At The Museum

An air handling unit that hasn’t worked since, well, ever. Chillers that have to work more often as a result — and an extra chiller just to attack the affected zone. These were the obvious symptoms, but what was the cause?
January 2, 2014
One of my favorite stories is about when I fixed a poorly performing air handling system at a local art museum.
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Check out highlights from projects featured in our magazine this year!
3/27/14 11:00 am EST

How to Calculate Backup Power Supply Requirements for Your Facility

On-Demand This webinar reviews how to determine power requirements of facility loads; electrical characteristics and impact of different types of loads such as large motors and UPS systems on power supply sizing; acceptable power sources and other constraints applied by building codes; and how software tools can be used to simplify the process of calculating backup power requirements.  

THE MAGAZINE

Engineered Systems Magazine

ES April 2014 cover

2014 April

Check out the April 2014 issue of Engineered Systems, with features on backup power supply requirements, cyberattacks, and much more!

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Design Flaws

Following up on Howard McKew's April "Tomorrow's Environment" column: Have you ever thought twice about reporting problems with another firm's design? What did you do?
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THE ENGINEERED SYSTEMS STORE

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The Green Energy Management Book

Learn from our experts how to evaluate job opportunities, market your services, sell a Walk-through Survey, target areas for an Energy Audit, calculate energy savings, do retrofit work, and win continuing contracts for retrofit work.

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Tomorrow's Environment Podcast

This series from longtime columnist and chronic forward-thinker Howard McKew covers a lot of ground -- from retrocommissioning to systems training, on toward checklists for drawings and tips for meeting minutes. Click HERE to be taken to the podcast page!

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