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18 April 2012

Mott MacDonald designed £13.5 million Foresterhill Energy Centre secures BREEAM Excellent rating

The Mott MacDonald designed £13.5 million environmentally-friendly Foresterhill Energy Centre at NHS Grampian’s new health campus in Aberdeen, UK, has secured a BREEAM Excellent rating score of 83.32%. The centre was also named best industrial building at the BREEAM Awards 2012.

Mott MacDonald, appointed lead design consultant by the project contractor Laing O’Rourke, provided full detailed engineering design for the scheme. When compared to meeting the increasing energy demand of the redeveloped site via the current supply arrangements, the new centre will reduce CO2 emissions by 9830 tonnes (16%) and energy costs by £2.95 million (39%).

The project was developed to service the further expansion of Europe’s largest medical teaching hospital complex which includes Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, Royal Aberdeen Children's Hospital and Aberdeen Maternity Hospital, along with the medical school and medical science departments of the University of Aberdeen. It consists of a 1.5MW biomass steam boiler fuelled with locally sourced wood chip, two 8.5MW and one 6.5MW dual fuel (gas/oil) steam boilers and a 5.3MW gas turbine combined heat and power unit.

Sam Simpson, Mott MacDonald’s technical director commented: “Biomass storage is conventionally achieved via a walking floor arrangement linked to either a ram or chain grate stoker. By working with the biomass supply chain we designed an integrated fuel storage and delivery system that reduced the overall footprint of the building by 450m², the amount of on-site excavation by 1100m3, eliminated dispersion of dust to the atmosphere and enabled a quicker delivery sequence.”

The architectural and engineering detailed design for new 850m² energy centre was fully developed from our Aberdeen office using Building Information Modelling (BIM). The walk-through visualisation generated from the BIM model was instrumental in validating the adequacy of the access and maintenance arrangements. Off-site prefabrication of the mechanical and electrical services saved time, improved safety and reduced waste.

Sam added: “The new plant had to be connected into a live energy system. Any prolonged outage would have had severe impacts on operation of the hospital. BIM enabled seamless integration of the new with the old. The new steam connection module was dropped into place and reconnected within 12 hours.”

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