University of Minnesota Combined Heat and Power Retrofit

The turbine is expected to save the university $176 million in energy costs through its projected 30 year lifespan.

  • Owner:
    University of Minnesota
  • Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
  • Scope:
    Mechanical process systems, turbine installation

Citing their obsolete boilers and growing energy demands, the University of Minnesota turned to Harris Mechanical for help with the installation of a state-of-the-art combined heat and power plant for their Minneapolis campus.
Due to zoning and permitting constraints, the new turbine, heat recovery system and modern mechanical systems had to fit in the historic Old Main Heating Plant. To head off space issues and potential clashes, Harris and its partners relied on 3D modeling to detect and resolve clashes so the project could proceed within time, space and budget constraints.
The installation of the 225,000 pound, 25 megawatt turbine took precise planning and teamwork. The floors of the historic building needed to be replaced and reinforced to accommodate the weight of the turbine as it transitioned into the building. Harris relied on a remote control goldhofer to bring the turbine safely down an embankment to the building. A crane and then a hydraulic slide system helped ease the turbine slowly into the building.