Grocery Case Study

Context

Over the last 15 years, Melink has partnered with a major grocery banner in the Southeast United States to help reduce the volume of conditioned air being exhausted through its stores’ kitchen hoods. Since replacing exhaust air with conditioned air comes at a premium in regions with high temperatures and high humidity, the need to dial in this minimum volume of replacement air becomes critical.

Solution

Melink offered Intelli-Hood®, its demand control kitchen ventilation system, as a solution to actively monitor cooking loads and to reduce kitchen hood exhaust volumes, thus reducing the replacement of conditioned air.

To date, Intelli-Hood® has been installed in more than 420 of the chain’s stores across the Southeast. By randomly sampling 30 of these systems, Melink concluded that this grocery banner saves $615,000 per year in fan energy and conditioned air savings (across its 420 stores).

Intelli-Hood Grocery Case Study Graph of average fan speeds

Download the full case study or contact us today to learn more about Intelli-Hood and the benefits of kitchen hood controls.

Culinary School Retrofit

The leading culinary school in Melbourne, Australia, features several full training kitchens that operate 24/7, 365 days per year.

Context

To address the ventilation system in the facility’s largest kitchen and to help control operating costs, the school decided to retrofit the existing design with a demand control kitchen ventilation system to self-modulate according to cooking conditions. Thus, an ENERGY STAR-rated Ecosense Ecocanopy, featuring kitchen hood controls by Melink Corporation, was installed in the training kitchen.

Result

Crown Culinarium Retrofit Results with Intelli-Hood

With the implementation of Intelli-Hood into the kitchen hoods of the training kitchen, the school was able to reduce its fan speed from 100% all the time to an average of 38%. Before Ecosense and Intelli-Hood, it cost $28,912 (AUD) yearly to operate the kitchen; this was reduced to $5,490. The system will pay for itself in about two years.

With this improvement, the college was not only able reduce its immediate energy consumption but is able to use the technology to continually monitor usage and adjust as necessary.

Example of Fan Speed Regulation Throughout the Day After Ecosense System Installed

Download the full case study or contact us today to learn more about Intelli-Hood and the benefit of kitchen hood controls.

Case Study: New Construction

Context

A fast-casual restaurant chain, which has undergone rapid growth in recent years, contacted Melink for assistance on its new construction HVAC projects. The chain’s rapid growth resulted in a fast-paced construction schedule. On average, a new store is completed in six weeks, which poses quality control challenges. Verifying that equipment is installed properly and operating to design specs is critically important.

Knowing that heating and cooling play a major role in building comfort, the company tried out Melink’s HVAC commissioning services at two of its Tennessee construction locations in early 2015. Deemed successful, the program expanded to 59 stores across the Midwest region being balanced by Melink in 2016. And in 2017, Melink provided HVAC commissioning services to more than 200 locations across the Midwest, South Central, and New York Metropolitan regions.

Punch List Examples

Results

Melink completed the commissioning services and provided balance reports promptly so that the company’s management team would know the equipment was correct and installed properly. Melink’s expediency also allowed the company to resolve punch list items under warranty, hold contractors accountable, and open the stores on time.

Revisits were necessary for 60% of the locations. Revisits are required when punch list items involve critical airflow corrections, such as a rooftop unit located on the wrong curb, wrongly sized equipment, or defective ductwork. Melink’s reports are also being used as part of the LEED certification application for the stores.

Case Study: Quick-Service Restaurants

Context

In 2014, a major fast food chain rolled out a rooftop replacement program across 56 stores nationwide.

The purpose of the program was to replace older, less efficient equipment with newer, energy-efficient units. Further, the restaurant company sought to obtain a holistic view of the building pressure/balance, health of equipment, and comfort of their stores for employees and customers.

Melink T&B was hired to verify proper installation, startup, and balance of the newly installed HVAC equipment across all stores. Additionally, Melink checked the old equipment for proper operation to provide a report on the health and comfort of their stores. The work was requested to be completed in four weeks during the Thanksgiving season. The project required collaboration between Melink and the restaurant owner, the rooftop unit manufacturers, and the installing contractor.

Results

Without scheduling hiccups and with very few site-readiness issues, all 56 restaurant locations were balanced for efficiency and comfort. The restaurant company’s management was provided with helpful reports on the condition of their new and existing HVAC equipment for each store.

The biggest challenge involved was in the schedule coordination between vendors to perform a high volume of work in a short period of time. However, each group rose to the occasion with excellent communication and professionalism to ensure comfort and efficiency for the restaurants and their guests.

Can we help your business?

Melink offers a range of testing, balancing, adjusting, and commissioning services. Contact us to learn more.

Case Study: Retail Stores

Context

A national retail chain hired Melink to perform test and balance services, as well as commissioning, for 46 locations.

Project goals included

  • Providing detailed reports to identify and resolve deficiencies
  • Assisting with decisions regarding equipment replacement
  • Adjusting systems to promote energy efficiency
  • Creating healthy and comfortable facilities with balanced indoor air quality for employees and guests

Results

Across the 46 locations, a total of 609 deficiencies were identified by Melink’s certified test and balance technicians. This is an average of 13 deficiencies per location.

Areas of Site Deficiencies

Melink successfully performed all visits within the customer’s requested timeline. Additionally, test and balance services were performed at three different prototypical location types, ranging in size and complexity.

Case Study: Test & Balance

Context

A quick-service restaurant hired Melink to perform a test and balance inspection to assess its HVAC system and investigate comfort issues. The restaurant was designed with multiple rooftop units (RTU) and exhaust fans.

 

Results

The following discrepancies were found during the inspection: 

  • RTU-1 designed for 17.5 tons but a 20 ton unit had been installed
  • Number of air devices for RTU-3 does not match the design plans
  • 2 exhaust fans installed on wrong curbs
  • Missing back-draft dampers on exhaust fans
  • EF-1 not operating
  • RTUs cycling on and off without call from thermostats
  • Loose flex duct causing air leakage above the ceiling
  • Poorly installed dampers that rattled and squeaked

While the contractor repaired these items, the Melink technician measured airflow and adjusted fan speeds and dampers to achieve optimal comfort and energy efficiency. Ultimately, the speed of six exhaust fans was able to be reduced to save conditioned air, energy, and money.

Overall, once the test and balance inspection was complete, the building pressure was corrected to be slightly positive. Learn why your facility should have positive building pressure.

 

 

 

Results

The following discrepancies were found during the inspection: 

  • RTU-1 designed for 17.5 tons but a 20 ton unit had been installed
  • Number of air devices for RTU-3 does not match the design plans
  • 2 exhaust fans installed on wrong curbs
  • Missing back-draft dampers on exhaust fans
  • EF-1 not operating
  • RTUs cycling on and off without call from thermostats
  • Loose flex duct causing air leakage above the ceiling
  • Poorly installed dampers that rattled and squeaked

While the contractor repaired these items, the Melink technician measured airflow and adjusted fan speeds and dampers to achieve optimal comfort and energy efficiency. Ultimately, the speed of six exhaust fans was able to be reduced to save conditioned air, energy, and money.

Overall, once the test and balance inspection was complete, the building pressure was corrected to be slightly positive. Learn why your facility should have positive building pressure.

 

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Upon arrival, the Melink technician met with the general contractor and mechanical contractor, reviewed the site’s design plans, and checked the equipment. 

 

 

Results

The following discrepancies were found during the inspection: 

  • RTU-1 designed for 17.5 tons but a 20 ton unit had been installed
  • Number of air devices for RTU-3 does not match the design plans
  • 2 exhaust fans installed on wrong curbs
  • Missing back-draft dampers on exhaust fans
  • EF-1 not operating
  • RTUs cycling on and off without call from thermostats
  • Loose flex duct causing air leakage above the ceiling
  • Poorly installed dampers that rattled and squeaked

While the contractor repaired these items, the Melink technician measured airflow and adjusted fan speeds and dampers to achieve optimal comfort and energy efficiency. Ultimately, the speed of six exhaust fans was able to be reduced to save conditioned air, energy, and money.

Overall, once the test and balance inspection was complete, the building pressure was corrected to be slightly positive. Learn why your facility should have positive building pressure.

 

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Upon arrival, the Melink technician met with the general contractor and mechanical contractor, reviewed the site’s design plans, and checked the equipment. 

 

 

Results

The following discrepancies were found during the inspection: 

  • RTU-1 designed for 17.5 tons but a 20 ton unit had been installed
  • Number of air devices for RTU-3 does not match the design plans
  • 2 exhaust fans installed on wrong curbs
  • Missing back-draft dampers on exhaust fans
  • EF-1 not operating
  • RTUs cycling on and off without call from thermostats
  • Loose flex duct causing air leakage above the ceiling
  • Poorly installed dampers that rattled and squeaked

While the contractor repaired these items, the Melink technician measured airflow and adjusted fan speeds and dampers to achieve optimal comfort and energy efficiency. Ultimately, the speed of six exhaust fans was able to be reduced to save conditioned air, energy, and money.

Overall, once the test and balance inspection was complete, the building pressure was corrected to be slightly positive. Learn why your facility should have positive building pressure.

 

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Paradise City Case Study

Paradise City is a resort located in Incheon, South Korea. The resort combines multi-purpose hospitality facilities including a hotel, casino, and convention center. Throughout the property,there are kitchens in nearly every facility, including the hotel, casino, spa, and bars.

Paradise City Hotel in South Korea

Context

Recently, the resort conducted energy audits across its kitchens to identify areas of improvement. One of the top priorities was to address the kitchen ventilation system, which consisted of 14 kitchens with hoods running at an average of 17.3 hours per day. To help control operating costs, they decided to implement a demand control kitchen ventilation system to self-modulate each kitchen, according to the cooking conditions.

Paradise City Intelli-Hood Case Study energy saving stats

Result

With the implementation of Intelli-Hood into all the kitchen hoods across the property, Paradise City was able to reduce its fan speed from 100% all the time to an average of 66%, resulting in a savings of $295,968 in the first year. The system will pay for itself in about two years. With this improvement, they were not only able reduce their immediate energy
consumption, but they are able to use the Intelli-Hood technology to continually monitor their usage and adjust as necessary.

Download the full case study or contact us today to learn more about Intelli-Hood and the benefit of kitchen hood controls.

Rexnord Industries

3.1 MW Ground-Mounted Solar Array

System Size: 3,101,840 MW

Indianapolis, Indiana

Annual Output (AC)
4.3 million kWH

Module Technology
Crystalline Silicon

Inverters
6

Modules
12,040

Melink Corporation operates a 3.1 MW ground-mounted solar array, part of the largest solar photovoltaic (PV) program for an investor-owned utility in the Midwest.

The array is located on Rexnord Industries’ 13-acre brownfield site in Indianapolis, Indiana, and is connected to Indianapolis Power & Light Company’s (IPL) distribution system.

Rexnord Industries Solar Project

Overall, the array consists of 12,040 solar PV modules, and it produces approximately 4.3 million kWh per year. The system supports Rexnord’s initiative to be an environmental steward.

Construction with support from U.S. Bancorp and Union Bank & Trust began in January 2014, and the system was commissioned in April 2014.

Urbana University

521 kW Ground-Mounted Solar Array

System Size: 521.36 kW

Urbana, Ohio

Annual Output (AC)
670,000 kWH

Module Technology
Crystalline Silicon

Inverters
500 kW, 480 VAC

Modules
2,128

Urbana University wanted to reduce its operational costs, as well as its reliance on non-renewable energy sources. The solution? Melink Corporation.

Melink developed a ground-mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) array for the university. Located on the southwest edge of the campus near the football and soccer stadium, the array consists of 2,128 solar PV modules, which contribute to approximately 15% of the school’s energy needs.

Yet even more valuable than this cost savings, the array serves as a visible example of Urbana University‘s commitment to sustainability.

In addition, the university wanted a hands-on tool to demonstrate how the solar array functions. As a solution, Melink installed an interactive, educational touch-screen in the Urbana University Student Center. The display illustrates the technology and the benefits associated with the project, serving as inspiration and motivation for students, faculty, administrators, and guests to make a change in their daily energy routine. 

An interactive touch-screen device delivers solar panel facts at Urbana University.

 Project construction began in October 2012 and the system was commissioned in November 2012. The project was supported by PNC Energy Capital.

Intelli-Hood Children’s Hospital Case Study

Content

Sustainability and energy efficiency are increasingly becoming hotter topics in healthcare. Like many major hospitals working towards environmental stewardship and higher Energy Star ratings, a large children’s hospital in central Ohio decided to make a conscious effort to develop their own sustainability goals and pursue a greener facility. In 2015, the hospital partnered with Go Sustainable Energy to do an energy audit of their facility and identify areas of improvement. Through the audit, they found an impactful area of savings was in the kitchen.

Result

Collaborating with Go Sustainable Energy and Melink Corp., the hospital was able to maximize their initial savings using AEP’s utility rebates and a dollar for dollar match from the state hospital association, which ultimately paid for almost 90% of their system. Go Sustainable Energy has served as the hospital’s advocate and manager of their post installation data. After the installation, they reported the following:

  • The proposal and installation process was simple and easy.
  • The controls were affordable and approved quickly in their CapEx budget.
  • The payback period was extremely quick and they are happy with their return.

**Project information and data provided by Neil Wittberg of Go Sustainable Energy.