Work is underway at Letterkenny Army Depot that will modernize depot infrastructure, cut energy use by approximately 28 percent, reduce water usage by nearly 50 percent, and generate at least $4.1 million in annual energy and operational savings.
The $43.6 million Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) project at the Pennsylvania depot was awarded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville, to Honeywell in August 2014. Work started in December 2014 and is expected to be complete by the end of 2016.
The project is expected to save the Army Materiel Command depot nearly 14.8 million kilowatt-hours of electricity each year – enough energy to power more than 1,360 homes on average, and an environmental benefit of cutting an estimated 72 million pounds of carbon dioxide each year, which is equivalent to removing more than 6,300 cars from the road.
An ESPC leverages third-party financing to make comprehensive energy and water efficiency improvements on facilities or implements new renewable energy capabilities at no upfront cost to the garrison. During the 23-year term of the contract, a portion of the contractor-guaranteed savings will pay for the project.
“These improvements will allow the depot to meet and exceed current energy requirements in Executive Order 13423, ‘Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy and Transportation Management,’ signed by President Bush Jan. 24, 2007,” said Rodney Gettig, Letterkenny’s director of public works. The Executive Order established energy reduction goals of 30 percent energy and 15 percent water reduction by the end of 2015.
“Construction will take about two years,” Gettig said. “Several things will be going on simultaneously. Lighting projects started the first week of February. Some projects cannot be started until warmer weather.”
When finished, the improvements will not only save on energy and water consumption, but also help provide continuous support to warfighters. “Obviously the more efficient operations can be the more output Letterkenny achieves,” said Jason Bray, Huntsville Center’s project manager. Letterkenny refurbishes military vehicles and electronic guidance systems used by Armed Forces around the world.
“Our reduction in energy use makes us a better deal for the tax payer long term in terms of saving money for services required by our nation's military,” Gettig said.
Some of the upgrades at Letterkenny Army Depot include:
· Modify an existing blast booth in building 350 with a new floor sweeper and media recovery system that automatically recovers abrasive blast materials.
· Install new wash water recycling systems in buildings 320 and 351. Significant water and soap cost reductions will be realized using these systems. And, by reducing the flow to the Industrial Waste Water Treatment (IWWT) the effectiveness of the chemical treatment is improved and additional savings occur.
· Replace inefficient metal finishing lines in building 370 with modern energy and labor efficient systems.
· Optimize the operation of the compressed air plant in Building 349. The modifications will also eliminate the need to use once-through city water for compressor cooling. In addition, the existing mist eliminator filter in building 370 serving the temporary air compressor connections will be relocated to provide constant use for the entire plant.
· New controls will be installed in the blast and paint booths and clean rooms in the production buildings 350 and 370 that will improve overall ventilation efficiency and reduce energy consumption.
· Modify the existing carousel paint line in building 350 to include a powder coat application and curing process that saves significant costs in paint and solvent materials.
“This project does not currently include any renewable energy measures; however, the depot just recently installed solar panels on three of our main production buildings to offset heating requirements, and has undertaken studies for the use of wind power, heat pumps and methane gas, however no decisions have been made on those projects,” Gettig said.
According to Bray, this is the second Army ESPC project to incorporate industrial process savings.
“Industrial process is making the process more efficient. At Letterkenny, the blast booth was causing delays because the depot had to subcontract this operation out, which meant sending the parts outside the depot and waiting for them to come back before work could be finished,” Bray said. “The upgraded blast booth will remove that step from the process.”
The first industrial process project awarded was Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois. The $61 million infrastructure modernization project at the Rock Island Arsenal Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center kicked off with a groundbreaking ceremony March 19, 2014. The project will support critical infrastructure improvements at the industrial facility that will cut energy use by approximately 35 percent and generate up to $5.3 million in annual energy and operational savings. The three-phase project is expected to be complete by May 2017.
The Huntsville Center is the Corps of Engineers’ Center of Expertise for ESPC and manages 85 to 90 percent of the Army’s ESPC portfolio.