Costa Rica. The facilities of MicroVention, a Terumo Group company, received a solution to their air conditioning needs from Ecoaire, which integrated a robust solution that had to be installed in three stages from 2018 to 2022.
This integration, which intervened the spaces of 3 clean rooms, 2 coating rooms, offices and social areas, is located in the company's building located in the Coyol Free Trade Zone. An important fact is that this company is dedicated to the manufacture of medical equipment.
Now, the products and manufacturers used in this project were, chillers from Trane and Smardt, handlers from Trane and VTS, Greenheck and Loren Cook fans, filtration from the Camfil brand and, finally, the pumping systems from Bell & Gossett and the manufacturer Armstrong.
In general, the project consisted of the installation of HVAC systems for the application of clean rooms, blunt coating, offices and other amenities, such as social areas, gym, dining room and living rooms. The entire solution was designed by Engineer Jorge Lossley J. M.Sc., executive director of the company AEG Consultores en Ingeniería S.A.
Notable features of the new solution
In this HVAC project, the different cooling stages are carried out by means of variable primary water systems, redundant, with Magnetic Centrifugal Chillers of variable speed, air-cooled and oil-free smardt brand; as well as Screw Chillers with variable speed of the Trane brand.
It is relevant to mention that both technologies have multiple circuits to improve the reliability of the system. In addition, all chillers have heat recovery systems that are used to provide the necessary overheating for the humidity control of the handlers, whose functionality is to guarantee the operating conditions of the ISO Class 8 clean rooms, in an approximate footprint of 18,750m2.
Another element that stands out are the industrial ventilation systems of the Greenheck and Loren Cook brands, which are responsible for the renewal and ventilation of the air in general. Additionally, it has building management and automation systems (BMS and BAS) of the Trane and Schneider Electric brands, which allow to control and monitor all operating variables, something fundamental for production conditions in the medical industry.
However, faced with the reason for the technologies chosen specifically for this project, the company Ecoaire indicated that "the technologies with which the different stages were worked were selected based on strict criteria of efficient use of energy, energy saving and reliability of the systems. The technologies used allow the customer to ensure the continuity of their business and reduce their operating cost."
The entire Coyol Free Trade Zone has been characterized by being a business park with the latest technology and an infrastructure available for use in the main medical industry plants in Costa Rica. This is why the client had built, in a first stage, an ice water system that uses Variable Speed Air Cooled Screw Chillers and Applied Trane Handlers, for the first clean room and office areas.
However, during the implementation they did not use resources from stage 1, on the contrary, the second stage of the project, which was where Ecoaire intervened, took into consideration the interconnection of the ice water systems of the first (existing) stage with the second stage, allowing the client to operate their ice water plants in a more efficient way.
This made it possible to operate stage 1 with the higher efficiency second-stage ice water plant, representing savings in operating costs and improved reliability of both stages.
Main objective of this solution
This HVAC project had as its main mission to guarantee the supply of controlled environment for ISO Class 8 Clean Rooms, as well as to promote a system capable of controlling the conditions of temperature, humidity, cleaning and pressurization of the Clean Rooms and offices, with an integration to the other electromechanical devices (OFA, ATS, Electrical Substation) through a building management and automation system (BMS).
Challenges of this project
The main difficulties presented were of the logistical type, due to the impact generated by the COVID-19 pandemic on the delivery times of the different equipment, this forced to take contingency measures so as not to affect the previously established deadlines for the execution of the project, thanks to the extensive experience of the project execution and inspection team it was possible to make timely decisions that allowed the project to leave in a timely manner.
Finally, from Ecoaire it was stated that "we consider that the expectations and needs of the client were exceeded, since it received an extremely robust, efficient system that facilitates the administration of its operation".