Inefficiencies at UMD cont.
Recently we were on a class field trip to the heating plant at UMD which provides steam 24/7 for use in most campus buildings. We felt it might be worth informing our fellow Ecoblogers what we learned. They currently have three boilers which burn primarily natural gas but are capable of burning a variety of fuel oils. The university prefers the use of natural gas because it burns cleaner than fuel oils. The as an additional effort to reduce air pollution the burners are designed to create low amounts of NOx. The plant has an operator on site around the clock that makes sure steam needs are met and nothing goes wrong at the plant. There is a constant computer monitoring system that keeps track of all relevant flow streams and their components. While this system is working out well for the university and efficiency is pretty good we have learned that for the Chester Park School remodeling project it is actually more efficient and cost effective to install a few small boilers at that building than running a new steam line to that building. So it is good to know that the university is taking steps to reduce the amount of air pollution the campus creates.
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