RMF has continuously been assisting USDA for two decades, providing a variety of engineering services to help improve the facilities the USDA occupies to carry out its mission to provide leadership on food, agriculture and natural resources. The USDA recently completed the modernization of the existing National Animal Disease Center (NADC) and National Veterinary Services Laboratory / Center for Veterinary Biologics (NVSL/CVB) Research Facilities in Ames, Iowa, creating the new National Center for Animal Health. The total project consists of the construction of over one million SF of new laboratory, animal housing, administrative and other support facilities.
RMF’s role in the project was to provide all new utility infrastructure facilities to support the new campus. Included is an upgraded boiler plant, a new chiller plant, fuel storage tank farm to back up the fuel supply to the boilers and supply fuel to the generators, a 5 MW cogeneration plant, new generators and switchgear for a new substation, and new campus distribution to the new buildings that will ultimately replace all of the existing campus utility distribution systems. The critical nature of the research required the campus to be able to provide 100% of its heating, cooling and electrical needs in the event of a loss of power from the local utility. The result of RMF’s effort provided the campus with a completely reliable supply of utilities.
- Two gas fired combustion turbines paralleling with the local utility, as well as the capability of cogenerating with 10 MW of diesel fired generators in the event of a total loss of normal power.
- Waste heat from the combustion turbines is used to create steam for heat in the winter and to operate two 1,000 ton absorber chillers.
- All new buildings are supplied with dual electric feeds to dual transformers.