This project was a task-order-based design of a six-bay flight simulator facility with PDC responsible for the mechanical and electrical systems design. Due to the highly sensitive nature of the flight simulators and associated equipment the majority of the building was designed as a Special Access Program Facility (SAPF). PDC provided energy modeling and mechanical, electrical, and communications engineering. Services provided included a planning charrette, conceptual layouts, independent technical and compliance review.
MECHANICAL: The mechanical systems included heat recovery ventilation units with dedicated outside air for increased energy efficiency. Multiple fan coil units provide the cooling air and humidity control required for this SAPF facility. Each fan coil has a two-by-two fan wall array to provide increased redundancy and variability of the system to ensure maximum energy savings. Underfloor air distribution and displacement ventilation diffusers are used to provide effective cooling to the occupied spaces while allowing energy saving stratification in the high bay spaces of the simulators.
- Heating: District steam from the Base power plant was used for all the heating needs of the building through the use of a steam to glycol heat exchanger. High-efficiency finned tube radiation was located throughout the perimeter of the facility with zones distributed for individualized occupant control and comfort. To meet the cooling demand of the flight simulators and associated equipment, a centralized water-cooled chiller with free-cooling capacity was used. During the winter months the chilled water system uses an exterior air-glycol heat exchanger to provide all the cooling for the building without operating the chiller and provides significant energy savings.
- Plumbing: The plumbing systems for this facility included a water treatment plant for the humidification units in the SAPF. This treatment uses de-chlorinator, water softener, and reverse osmosis units to provide near maintenance free humidification to the sensitive equipment in this SAPF facility.
All of the mechanical equipment serving the SAPF was required to be fully redundant to ensure continued operations of the flight simulators.
- Power: Existing overhead power lines run along the west side of the project site. The power service is tapped off of these lines and extends underground to a new pad mounted transformer near the building. The main electrical room is on the un-secure side of the building but serves both the non-secure and SAPF portions of the building. Interior power distribution keeps circuits on one side of the SAPF wall. Device type and quantity are provided per the FRD and as required by Code.
- Lightning Protection: A lightning protection system is being provided at this building to reduce chance of damage from lightning strikes and to protect the equipment.
- Lighting: Exterior lighting has LED as the source to optimize energy efficiency and reduce long term maintenance costs. Exterior lighting is photocell and DDC controlled through a lighting contactor. Interior lighting has LED as the source to optimize energy efficiency and reduce long-term maintenance costs. Almost all spaces have occupancy sensor control to help reduce energy use. The exceptions being where required by code (electrical rooms) and in spaces that need lights to remain off during use (simulator bays).
PROJECT CHALLENGES: Key challenges included maintaining critical plant operations; meeting strict environmental requirements; maintaining high security boundaries while accommodating maintenance; and a limited building footprint. A detailed concept design was developed to confirm feasibility and facilitate discussions of detailed requirements with users. Phased delivery of process equipment required additional effort to meet the environmental conditions while maintaining optimal energy efficiency.