14 Burns & McDonnell • www.burnsmcd.aero
Like most hospitals and universities, a modern-commercial
airport is a campus growing to meet its customer needs for
facilities and support systems. And such growth requires
master planning and infrastructure to provide the most
efficient use of capital.
As in other campus environments, an airport consists of
many buildings with diverse utility needs and use patterns. Air
traffic control towers, airfield lighting, baggage handling and
screening, terminal security, and passenger comfort are critical
services not only for the business operations of the airport but
also for the security of the community and national aviation
system. An airport campus’ supply of electricity, thermal energy,
IT and specialized aviation power supplies (i.e. 400 Hz) should
be reliable, redundant and cost-efficient.
Meeting current and future energy needs is a necessary
component of an airport’s mission and should be included
in the airport’s master planning process.
Campus owners who develop a comprehensive energy master
plan (CEMP), either concurrent with a traditional facilities
master plan or as an independent effort, understand the effects
of setting energy goals and growing their facilities.
While reliability and redundancy in airport utility systems is
mandatory for airport operations, consideration and planning of
future capacity and long-term costs is needed to achieve the
airport’s business plan. Airport utilities can consist of electrical
distribution, emergency generation, chilled water, steam (or
hot water), potable water, sewer, natural gas, combined heat
and power (CHP), and any other utility needed to maintain
operations. Because such utilities often are dependent upon
each other, planning them together in a CEMP helps minimize
overall campus utility life cycle costs.
A campus CEMP identifies many energy trends, including an
industry progression toward combined heat and power (CHP),
also known as cogeneration. In some regions of the U.S., CHP
An experienced utility master planner can determine if an
investment in CHP can offset other costs and achieve low
life cycle costs for the future. Consider an example where an
airport may need to upgrade or replace its emergency power
generation systems: Careful planning may result in
an opportunity to combine the capital expenditure for
emergency power with improvements in the thermal utilities
via implementation of CHP.
Determining utility needs for the foreseeable future of your
airport, a CEMP involves conducting a cost-benefit analysis
that considers performance of existing equipment, alternative
energy sources, energy and water conservation, demand-side management, and infrastructure optimization to reduce
UTILITIES TO SECURE
By James Rosick, PE, LEED AP, and Tim Burkhalter, PE, CEM, LEED AP BD+C