University to get electrical makeover

Over the summer, some of the University’s underground electrical hubs will be replaced after being used for years.

Capital Planning Vice President Steve Krakoff and Assistant Vice President Brian Swope talked about what exactly is going to happen over the summer with the hubs.

“We are in the process of converting a number of facilitates from 4,160 volts to 12.47 kV,” he said. “The buildings that will be affected during the upgrade are the Education Building, Fine Arts Center, Mileti Alumni Center, Kresicher, Harshman, Conklin, East Hall, Kohl Hall, Business Administration Building, Olscamp Hall, Memorial Hall, Slater Family Ice Arena, Doyt Perry Stadium and Peripherals.”

According to Swope, the two load centers where most of the University’s power are used from are also getting switched from the 2460s resistor to 12.47 and getting rid of the resistors. The Harshman and Centrix Load Centers are dismantled as well as the Business Administration, Olscamp, Education buildings, and Memorial Hall.

The price of the project and upgrades is $6.7 million. According to Swope and Krakoff, this includes the construction cost, engineers fee and everything else needed for this project.

The main benefit of the project is reducing the amount of electricity used at the University because the older electrical hubs are outdated and inefficient.

“The electrical master plan on the 12.47 kV upgrade is happening right now, but a study showed if we converted to 12.47, we would save 3 percent in demand save and 3 percent reduction of energy or kilowatt power. More efficient power would be better since it would not be running through the transformer that get power to the University. Other benefits would be that since the load centers are out of date, and need upgraded, if these were to go down, all buildings would be without power,” Swope said. “However, with the new system coming in the summer, everything will be decentralized and have new equipment for the new upgrade and power is coming in since everyone will be gone it will be easier to get these upgrades done and save money for this project.”

Swope expects the upgrade to be completed safely over the course of the summer.

“There are risks, but a lot of extensive planning and a sound schedule and a well outcome and the budget is very well and strong, financial and beneficially,” Swope said.

Krakoff also mentioned that students will benefit from the upgrade as well.

“This Energy conservation plan, saves money and makes operating costs easy for students to work with while attending the University.” Krakoff said.