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Ware Installing New Control System Technology at the University of Louisville

Posted by Ritchie Ware on Nov 20, 2014 12:33:00 PM

WARE partners with UofL to replace steam and boiler systems

Ware is currently partnering with the University of Louisville to replace a control system in the University’s Steam Plant. The system controls the boilers to heat the University’s entire campus and makes use of a new technology within the control system industry.

The old control system, which was used for a coal-fired boiler and a newer gas fired boiler, resulted in water damage and caused the shutdown of the steam plant. The customer wanted to ensure this did not happen again and wanted redundancy of their control. The old control system was removed to make way for the new control system. The new control system provides Human Machine Interface (HMI) software, PLC, Autoflame Burner Management, and Yokogawa multi-loop controllers, all communicating with the HMI over Ethernet TCP/IP in the operators control room.

The system has multiple screens on a dual-monitor setup that reads hundreds of points throughout the boiler room. It displays and records real-time data, alarms, and failures. Steam Plant operators now have redundant control capability to be able to operate locally and remotely.

The major benefit of the new control system is that it provides the University of Louisville Steam Plant with redundancy control over their multiple boilers, which is rather important considering the system heats the entire campus.

Ware’s own Barry Stanfield notes that Steam Plant workers now have the ability to view information locally, or by “reading it off the web, or sending it to their iPhones.”

Mitch Kennedy secured Ware’s role in the project through a bid in April. Following that, Ware engineered and recommended supplies for the project, which the University purchased. Then two members of the Ware team, Barry Stanfield and Matt Hogue, began work on the installation of the system.

Patience has been necessary on both Ware’s side of the project as well as the University’s. When Ware initially bid on the project, the old HMI software was still available. However, by the time the project PO was issued, the old software had been phased out by the supplier and new Point-of-View software had been implemented. While the learning curve with the new software has been a challenge, it is ultimately a benefit for both parties; the project demonstrates Ware’s ability to adapt and make the necessary changes to deliver the customer’s desired results. Meanwhile, the University has been given the opportunity to utilize one of the newest available HMI technologies.

Overall, the partnership has been an enjoyable process. Barry said, “They’re really good people...and the steam plant superintend Dave was very patient and helpful.”

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