MEDFORD, Ore. – Hospitals around the country face enormous energy costs that can strain their budgets and divert funds from patient care. In one year, Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center (ARRMC) reduced its energy costs by $187,000 and won a $304,250 incentives grant by updating its indoor comfort system.
ARRMC, a 378-bed referral and trauma center in Medford, Oregon, surpassed its energy savings goals by working with Trane, a brand of Ingersoll Rand. The hospital updated its aging heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system and added backup to reduce chiller kilowatt use by 150 percent.
“We need to uphold our critical care environment and our commitment to patient care,” said Jeff Robbins, facility manager for Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center. “This solution minimized risk of downtime during seasons when we have a lot of energy demand.”
Organizations spend more than $6.5 billion on energy each year, according to ENERGY STAR®, and costs are rising. To offset these costs, ARRMC identified opportunity within its indoor comfort system.
Thanks to the hospital’s energy savings performance, the Energy Trust of Oregon awarded the medical center incentives, which ARRMC reinvested into other energy efficiency projects at the hospital.
The system continuously ran at max capacity during hot summer months. The existing chiller system inefficiently stopped and started intermittently to meet chilled water demand. Multiple suppliers provided controls, which weren’t delivering data the hospital needed to monitor energy use and evaluate critical adjustments.
The new solution includes a backup chiller to increase cooling capacity and efficiently cool water in the HVAC system regardless of weather conditions or patient capacity. The team installed new equipment on all the cooling tower fans and condenser pumps to adjust fan speed as demand changes.
The medical center also integrated a controls system to streamline facility management and maintenance. A building automation system monitors the system to uncover inefficiencies and help the facilities manager make informed energy management decisions.
Publication date: 1/21/2019