Steele Hall Renewal and Energy Retrofit

About the Project

This Steele Hall project, completed in Dec. 2018, is a great example of collaboration between Dartmouth's capital renewal and energy management teams. Originally conceived as a capital renewal project stemming from the need to repair failed steam heating coils in the building air handling units and a need to update the laboratory-air control systems, an integrated project was developed to address the capital renewal needs and incorporate several innovative and effective energy conservation measures. Highlights of the project include:

  • Update laboratory exhaust/ventilation control systems and reduce airflow quantities where possible and appropriate.
  • Replace failed steam heating coils in the building air handlers.
  • Modify the existing lab exhaust heat recovery system to optimize the recovery efficiency of the system.
  • Convert the building heating system from steam to low-temperature hot water (110°F), allowing incorporation of heat pump chillers.
  • Install heat pump chillers to efficiently produce heating and cooling simultaneously and reduce demand on the campus central pla

Projected Savings

Measurement and verification calculations based on metered data for the period beginning March 2019 through February 2020 (year preceding COVID) indicate the following savings:

  • 8 Million pounds of steam (estimated 74% Reduction for Steele Hall), resulting in a savings of over 94,000 gallons of No. 6 Fuel Oil at the Central Heating Plant
  • 350,000 ton-hours in cooling load saved at the North Chilled Water Plant
  • 300,000 kWh of grid-purchased electricity
  • Plus, an estimated 450,000 gallons of city water saved at the North Chiller Plant cooling tower due to the reduction in cooling load

Combined, these reductions are estimated to save the College over $200,000 in annual utility costs. Most importantly, the project is expected to reduce Dartmouth's annual greenhouse gas emissions by more than 1,100 Metric Tons CO2e – the equivalent of removing 250 cars from the roads.

Project Team

  • Project Manager:  Julia Pfeiffer
  • Mechanical Engineers:  Van Zelm Engineers, SMi Enerpro, Eequinox
  • Construction Manager:  Daniel O'Connell's Sons
  • Mechanical Contractor:  Vermont Heating and Ventilating
  • Controls Contractor:  JCI