In January last year the construction of a large meeting, teaching and research center, Center Court, which spans over 18,000 m2, was started at the Brightlands Chemelot Campus in Sittard-Geleen in the Netherlands. Upon the request of the contractor, Econosto took on the role of the engineer to evaluate and improve the installation design in collaboration with the installer M-Tech from Breda. As a result nearly all of the improvement proposals are implemented - despite the considerable budgetary consequences.
Center Court crucial for the development of the Campus
As of mid-2016 Center Court will host Chemelot Innovation and Learning Labs (CHILL), the Maastricht Science Programme of the Maastricht University and the DSM Innovation Center. The centrally located building will also provide extensive conference and catering facilities, making it the beating heart of the Chemelot Campus.
Engineering and installation hand in hand
Steef Voermans, Steam Application Engineer at Econosto: "To ensure that constructional, mechanical and electrical disciplines tie in seamlessly with each other and to ensure that strict regulations on health, safety and environmental aspects are complied with, Bright Lands Chemelot Campus decided to award the construction of Center Court to a single contractor. Econosto was then requested by the contractor to assess the initial system design and specifications for steam and hot water systems for the research laboratories of Maastricht University and CHILL and to recommend a company that can take care of both the engineering and the installation aspects of these systems. We found the right partner in M-Tech."
M-Tech: from maintenance to turnkey delivery
"Our company specialises in installation engineering and equipment construction and we are active in various sectors including construction, civil engineering, healthcare, government and the food industry," said Rob Theunis, project manager at M-Tech.
"We also have the necessary expertise in the field of steam and condensate technology. The scope of our activities range from regular maintenance to the engineering, design and turnkey delivery of complete installations. "
Completely revised design and specifications
After Theunis in consultation with the contractor had determined that the design and specifications could be improved on many aspects, Econosto and M-Tech calculated the design with a critical eye. "We also looked at the applicability of the prescribed materials," said Voermans. "Many of the prescribed accessories were made from cast iron - and sometimes even copper. Although cast iron is still allowed in steam applications, we recommended using nodular cast iron.Cast iron which is tougher, stronger and therefore safer, for instance when you encounter water hammer. We also recalculated all of the pipe diameters, established the appropriate accessories and made suggestions for improvement. The final design was prepared based on this." Theunis: "That design was more expensive than originally budgeted, but because the price-increasing factors were attributable to an increase in quality and safety, the contractor agreed with us."
Expect more: also engineering and technical consultation
Although Econosto delivered a nice package of accessories - including steam traps, filters, valves, control valves, seals and pressure gauges - the emphasis of the Center Court project was the provision of expertise during the design and engineering phase. Knowledge and experience - along with the combined forces of Econosto and M-Tech - have led to a significantly better installation design.