Springs Preserve is a 180-acre historical and cultural attraction located three miles from the Las Vegas Strip. In May 2005, a two-year, $250 million sustainable construction project was initiated to create a multibuilding educational facility.
Interested in the most energy-efficient concepts and equipment for heating and air-conditioning the buildings, Springs Preserve contacted Bryan Im of Norman Write. Im selected an Oasis indirect-evaporative air-conditioning system from Munters. Best suited for hot, dry climates, Oasis assists in significantly reducing energy consumption during peak design conditions.
Oasis utilizes indirect evaporative cooling (IEC) to take most of the load off of the direct-expansion (DX) cooling. In addition, the DX portion of the cooling was made more efficient by having the relatively cool, moist air from the scavenger side of the IEC heat exchanger flow over the air-cooled condenser coil prior to it being exhausted. The Oasis system operates most efficiently during the hottest time of the day, so electrical demand is reduced dramatically. With the energy savings obtained with the Oasis equipment and other sustainable efforts, Springs Preserve is targeting Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
Oasis uses a corrosion-resistant polymer heat exchanger to produce dry, cool air without refrigeration. The heat-exchanger core incorporates unique horizontal polymer tubes. Water flows across the tubes as air flows through them in the opposite direction. This air may scavenge ambient air or exhaust air from the space. When exhaust air is routed through the Oasis, the system becomes even more efficient, as it recovers cooling energy from the space. During winter, Oasis can recover heat exhausted from the space. Air supplied to the space flows across the outside of the tubes and is sensibly cooled — no moisture is added. In many cases, Oasis can deliver air as cool as 55°F, even when the outside-air temperature is as high as 100°F. During winter, Oasis can recover 50 percent of the heat exhausted from the space. The decreased need for extra cooling from the cooling coil translates to increased energy savings.
Information and photographs courtesy of Munters Corp.