Category Archives: Healthcare

Benefits of Centralized Uninterruptible Power Supply Systems

When evaluating the design criteria for an electrical distribution system in a facility of significant magnitude, vast complexity, or of critical operations, such as a hospital, a centralized uninterruptible power supply (UPS) system backed up by the emergency standby power source should be considered. There are numerous benefits associated with utilizing a central UPS system

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Advanced Central Steam Plant Technologies

Central utility plants are traditionally used in campus settings to generate and distribute steam to multiple buildings. While central steam plants are an effective way to provide heat for a campus layout, these plants are also complex and can be expensive to operate. Some owners are finding that investing in and employing advanced steam plant

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Low-Flow Fixtures Can Be A Hot Topic

Energy/utility savings are becoming more prevalent in building managers’ roles in reducing their facility’s operational costs. Water consumption savings are attractive with the latest in low-flow plumbing fixtures, and the consumption savings trickle into reduced water heating capacity too. Although it may seem like a simple task in specifying low-flow fixtures or even replacing plumbing

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Arc Flash Hazard Analysis

Why Do I Need To Be Concerned With Arc Flash Hazards? An arc flash is a sudden, massive release of energy from a piece of electrical equipment caused by a fault in the system. The fault can be caused by anything from failing insulation to moisture in equipment to a worker accidentally dropping a screwdriver

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Defining NFPA 37

Wesley Stiles, PE, Director of Electrical Engineering for the York office, is featured in the December issue of Consulting-Specifying Magazine for the article below. NFPA 37: Standard for the Installation and Use of Stationary Combustion Engines and Gas Turbines, 2015 edition, is an important yet often overlooked player in NFPA’s extensive lineup of codes and

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Fire Protection Antifreeze Systems

The coming of winter requires the Building Owners and Managers to review their buildings and systems for protection against freezing. However, there is one building system that may already be freeze protected and should be reviewed due to recent developments – sprinkler antifreeze systems. Based upon reports of a fire incident involving a sprinkler system

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Optimizing Your Chiller Water Plant

Many existing chilled water plants are designed using primary-secondary pumping where one set of pumps circulates water at the chilled water plant and then another set of pumps circulates water to the building or buildings.  This is common in larger buildings or campuses where the many spaces or buildings are served by one system, and

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Retro-Commissioning – A Brief Case Study

Barton Associates recently retro-commissioned an air handler for a hospital client. The retro-commissioning process typically starts with a review of the Building Automation System (BAS). A graphic screen shot from the subject air handler is shown above. There is a lot of information on this screen, but focus on the basic information circled in red

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Increase HVAC Efficiency by Directing Air to the Source of Heat Generation

Traditional air conditioning typically conditions an entire room or space, such as in an office space or classroom. Air is supplied from the ceiling and distributed throughout the space. This is a cost effective method but is not well suited for some applications due to the limitations in efficiency in cooling the entire space including

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An Alternative for Operating Room Ceilings

For many years the conventional operating room ceiling consisted of a gypsum board or plaster ceiling with openings framed out for lights and diffusers. Openings would be field cut in the gypsum board for overhead surgical light supports, diffusers, general lighting and medical gas columns. With the advent of hybrid operating rooms, the construction of

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