About University of Miami

A private research university with more than 16,000 students from around the world, the University of Miami is a vibrant and diverse academic community focused on teaching and learning, the discovery of new knowledge, and service to the South Florida region and beyond.

The 60,000 ft 2 Wellness Center sits atop a parking garage, occupying the top two floors of a thirteen-story building. The center includes a 15,000 ft 2 fitness floor with over 100 pieces of state-of-the-art cardio and strength equipment, four group fitness instructional classrooms including a dedicated studio cycling room, pool, indoor courts, restaurant and instructional kitchen.

The Challenge

The indoor air quality (IAQ) was not at the level the facilities management team desired. Fitness centers generate a lot of carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) from people exercising, and the equipment and mats can off-gas formaldehyde and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Using increased outside air ventilation to improve the air quality inside was attempted, making it difficult for the HVAC systems to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature and humidity. Further, the energy consumption of the HVAC equipment was already quite high and adding more hot, humid outside air ventilation would cause a significant increase in utility costs. Finally, increased outside air ventilation would result in an increase in fine particulate matter coming from the neighboring highway.

Solution

Faced with higher than desired energy costs and a commitment to high air quality and comfort, the Wellness Center turned to enVerid for help. The enVerid project team assessed the air quality goals and the HVAC mechanical environment to come up with a solution and a detailed installation plan.

Using the ASHRAE 62.1 Indoor Air Quality Procedure (IAQP), the university could use enVerid HLR modules to clean the indoor air of the Wellness Center, instead of relying solely on outside air. Three enVerid HLR systems were installed, enabling a 75% average reduction in required outside airflow.

36% Energy Savings and Improved IAQ

Acceptance tests for each HLR module, followed by the entire facility, were conducted by a third party. HLR energy savings were validated and confirmed by the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL). IAQ measurments were performed per EPA standard and analyzed by an independent lab.

Deployed: July 2015
Location: Miami, Florida
Climate Zone: 1A
Industry: Higher Education
Enrollment: 16,000 students
Challenges: Poor indoor air quality and high HVAC energy consumption at state-of-the-art university wellness center
Solution:enVerid HLR modules installed on each floor of 60,000 ft 2 wellness facility to scrub air of contaminants and reduce the amount of outside air ventilation required
Results:

  • 36% average reduction in total HVAC energy consumption – saving $19,500 per year
  • 41% peak HVAC capacity reduction
  • 75% average reduction in outside air
  • Estimated water savings of $9,200 per year
  • Better indoor air comfort: relative humidity decreased 10% and air temperature reduced 2.5˚C
  • Improved air quality: Reduced TVOCs to 780 μg/m 3 , formaldehyde to 29 μg/m 3, CO 2 to 753 ppm, and reduced particulate matter from the neighboring highway