Boiler Plant Controls and Study
Marina City (Chicago, Illinois)
The main boiler plant at this complex provides hot water to many different tenants. We were hired to study the inconsistent operation of this boiler plant, because under certain conditions, the hot water supply temperature would fluctuate greatly and cause problems at some of the tenants’ equipment.
We used our ultrasonic flow meter and temperature data loggers to determine that the system controlling these two large boilers could control them slowly enough to provide a consistent hot water supply temperature. We found a large range of outdoor conditions where operating one boiler would have been sufficient, but the existing control system had two boilers enabled.
Furthermore, the packaged controller could not be tuned to work with these large boilers. We physically stood at the operating boiler and used the manual firing rate dial to witness for ourselves that these boilers were controllable, and that they needed to be adjusted very slowly because of the extremely large volume of water in the system. We worked with the Owner to get a fully programmable control system installed to control these boilers properly, and also provide the beginning of a simple BAS network for future expansion.