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Design Solutions: Heavy-Duty Ultralow-NOx Boilers Chosen for Resort's Central Plant

Deemed the ninth-largest private construction project in California by California Construction magazine, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians' $350 million transformation of Agua Caliente Casino into a luxury resort included the addition of a hotel tower with 340 guest rooms, a spa, a pool and cabana complex, and a state-of-the-art conference center. In late 2008/early 2009, a 2,000-seat entertainment venue will open.

Project engineer Benjamin Yeung of MSA Engineering Consultants selected heavy-duty ultralow-nitrogen-oxide (NOx) boilers from Parker Boiler for all hot-water-heating and domestic-water needs. To ensure the system was installed correctly, the contractor, Pacific Rim Mechanical, served in a design-build capacity, working well with the designer/architect, VOA Associates Inc.; the general contractor, Roel Construction; and Parker engineers.

All of the boilers include Parker's multiple-metal-fiber low-NOx burners and variable-speed-drive fan-assisted combustion controls.

For closed-loop space-heating needs, three T5700LR high-efficiency ultralow-NOx boilers were selected.

For potable water, Dean McCook of McCook Boiler and Pump, the Parker Boiler representative from Las Vegas, and the engineer came up with a unique dual-temperature system. In lieu of blending valves, three WH2650LR ultralow-NOx high-efficiency indirect water heaters were selected with a Parker storage tank. The secondary sides of the heaters were piped to a tempered water tank for the 120°F service requirements, while the primary sides of two of the units were piped into a double-wall tank-heater bundle in a separate tank to boost water temperature to 160°F for kitchen and laundry services.

For the 10,500-sq-ft spa with treatment rooms, fitness center, and private pool, two Parker WH730L low-NOx indirect-fired heaters, along with a tank and accessories, were selected for potable-water needs. The spa is located adjacent to the resort's expansive pool area and 13,000-sq-ft conference center.

Fitting the property with Parker boilers was not without challenges. Parker engineers designed the system keeping in mind the area's high winds, which are notorious for blowing sand and dirt into combustion systems. Special attention was paid to fan assemblies to prevent winds from harming burner safeties and turning off special low-emission equipment. All of the units with inputs over 2 MMBtu include built-in economizers or external economizers for maximum system efficiency and to reduce total greenhouse-gas emissions.

As with all Parker Boiler equipment sold in Southern California, Parker Boiler's factory-service and sales departments commissioned and tuned the equipment and provided operator training.

Information and photograph courtesy of Parker Boiler Co.

For Design Solutions author guidelines, call Scott Arnold, executive editor, at 216-931-9980, or write to him at [email protected].

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