Addressing Standby Power Needs of Science Buildings

Joseph DelPozzo, WSP Building Systems

Today's science buildings are a convergence of scientific and technology driven facilities with valuable and critical research that requires alternative power distribution solutions to minimize risks. Engineers must question the design status quo by going beyond the often minimal 'standard' code mandated requirements and utilize alternative strategies to assure reliability in a research facility's standby electrical system. The Big Question is: How will the project be affected if full standby power is provided? We will discuss the unique solutions and strategies to go beyond the 'standard' design features. To adequately address the solution is to understand the sciences and risks; the Owner and Engineer need to collaborate and have foresight of the research front line.

A few of the performance considerations that will be discussed are: right sizing; budget; space; operations & maintenance; fuel storage and quantity; emission controls; peak shaving; utility demand response incentives; and phasing. Our presentation will provide analytical results from recently completed installations at research facilities which cascaded into capital and operational savings by understanding peak loads and the benefits achieving a higher level of redundancy.

Learning Objectives

  • Challenging the rules of thumb to develop cost effective solutions;
  • Understanding the implications of under sizing and over sizing equipment;
  • Questioning the solutions which might not be the best solution; and
  • Using available data to make informed decisions.


Mr. DelPozzo is a Senior Vice President for WSP in NYC. Mr. DelPozzo leads the NY office Science & Technology Group and has nearly 30 years of experience in electrical engineering design.


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