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Tuesday, 20 August

Intercontinental Hotel Cuts Energy By 40%

The Intercontinental Hotel in Madrid

A landmark hotel in Madrid is saving energy and meeting its environmental goals after equipping its heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems with high efficiency motors.

Energy usage has been reduced by 445,000 kWh a year – enough to boil two million kettles of water.

Through its ‘Green Engage’ sustainability programme, IHG  (InterContinental Hotels Group) has enabled its hotels and resorts to reduce energy consumption by up to 25 per cent between 2013 and 2017. A key area of focus in energy reduction is the HVAC systems that can use between 60 to 80 per cent of all the energy consumed by a hotel.

The IHG Green Engage system is a business-wide, online sustainability programme helping its hotels manage and report their use of energy, carbon, water and waste, thereby minimising overall environmental impact and utility costs. Participation in the IHG Green Engage system is a global standard for all IHG hotels and it recognises their progress through four levels.

 

200 solutions

The programme recommends more than 200 green solutions, implementation plans and support systems to help hotels achieve their action plans and targets. InterContinental Madrid has already achieved all levels – the first one to achieve the highest savings in Europe – and it won an internal award in recognition of this.

Located on the Paseo de la Castellana, the Five-Star hotel has stood as a landmark in Spain’s hospitality industry throughout its 65-year history. It welcomes around 100,000 guests a year including presidents, royalty, celebrities and business leaders.

The hotel recognises that sustainability is important for its guests and aims to make it easy for them to stay at a hotel that shares their values.

“Through the IHG Green Engage program, every hotel has to achieve defined environmental goals. But there can never be any compromise on comfort or convenience for our guests,” said Esteban Rodriguez, Chief Engineer of the InterContinental Hotel Madrid.

 

Energy survey identified areas of low efficiency

The hotel has eight pump groups that serve its HVAC systems as well as hot water supply for guest rooms, kitchens and other facilities. Although these systems were well maintained and in good condition, the hotel management was concerned that their energy efficiency levels were below current best practice. Therefore, the hotel called in ABB’s official value provider in Madrid, Exel Industrial, to carry out a detailed energy survey. The survey revealed that the hotel’s energy use was high, particularly in the existing baseplate pumps, where both the motors and the pumps were inefficient.

“The study showed that 40 per cent of energy could be saved by decreasing the frequency of the motor by 10 per cent,” said  Enrique Bernad Lillo, Quality and Financial Manager at Exel Industrial.

 

Improved process stability and energy savings

ABB recommended that the pumping systems should be upgraded with variable speed drives (VSDs) and electric motors with the IE3 energy efficiency classification that is now mandatory for compliance with EC regulations.

In 2016, a total of 13 ABB HVAC drives and 16 IE3 motors were installed in new baseplate pump groups and integrated into building management systems. Using VSDs to regulate the pumps provides the system with greater stability and considerable energy savings, as the motor speeds are now adjusted to match the precise demand at any given time.

The drives and motors also offer operational benefits that go beyond energy savings as they help to lower running noise while offering smooth starting. This reduces the stress on the pumping systems, helping to extend maintenance intervals.

 

Maintenance

Overall maintenance needs are also being decreased by a longer pump life span, especially as the VSDs can eliminate the potentially harmful effects of pump cavitation, which refers to voids in liquids that implode near a metal surface and trigger intense shockwaves inside the pump.

 

Payback in less than two years

“Our ABB intelligent motion solutions enable energy savings of around 40 per cent, helping IHG not only to meet but exceed its Green Engage goals. Over a year that adds up to 445,000 kilowatt hours (kWh), cutting the hotel’s annual energy bill by more than £28,000 to deliver a projected return on investment in less than two years,” said Morton Wierod, President of ABB’s Motion business. “This is a great example of how our variable speed drives, combined with our high efficiency motors are providing the most affordable, effective and sustainable means of saving energy and optimising operations for our customers.”

Picture: The Intercontinental Hotel in Madrid is saving energy and meeting its environmental goals after equipping its heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems with high efficiency motors.

 

 

Article written by Brian Shillibeer

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