Fulton Products Contribute to High HVAC Efficiencies at Facility Expansion
St. Vincent Fishers Hospital in Fishers, Indiana is part of the largest Catholic, a not-for-profit healthcare system in the United States.
It serves its community not only by providing the utmost in compassionate care but by implementing excellence in environmental stewardship by obtaining LEED certification under the Healthcare rating system – and by being the first hospital in Indiana to do so.
This explains why, in 2013, when St. Vincent Fishers needed to expand its emergency care clinic to a full-service inpatient care hospital, it adopted its vision statement: “expansion with the environment in mind.” And why, when it came to its heating, humidification, and sterilization needs, St. Vincent Fishers chose to install Fulton boiler equipment.
Acting on the advice of Kevin McNutt of BSA LifeStructures, consulting engineer on the project, and working with Fulton representative and product specialist Byron Koch, President of A.B Young Company, St. Vincent Fishers installed:
- three dual-fuel Fulton Vantage (VTG-2000DF) high-efficiency condensing hydronic heating boilers, and
- two Fulton Classic (ICS-20) vertical tubeless steam boilers.
In 2015, the ICS-20s, used for humidification only, were upgraded to two (bigger) Fulton Vertical Multi-Port (VMP-50), low-emissions, dual-fuel steam boilers. These boilers back-fed the existing surgery suite for sterilization and then re-fed St. Vincent Fishers’ need for humidification, serving a much greater overall load.
The Vantage Advantage
The three installed Fulton Vantage hydronic boilers, as fully condensing boilers, achieve higher thermal efficiencies – up to 99% – by recovering the latent heat of condensation from their own exhaust gases.
They are dual-fuel optimized for both natural gas and No. 2 fuel oil. In fact, Vantage is the world’s first condensing boiler to offer full-time operation on No. 2 oil as a secondary fuel.
The Vantages were also installed with a Fulton ModSync controller for outdoor reset and BACnet communication to maximize system efficiencies based on seasonal temperatures and integration with building software systems, respectively.
Says Kevin McNutt, “Our firm has incorporated Fulton Vantages for hospital boiler plants for at least the past 10 years because of their ability to drop the heat and hot water temperature so that we could get the condensing out of them for energy savings. Also, there is a dual-fuel feature that we need for healthcare.”
"We arrived at Fulton because it’s a quality product number one, and number two because [Fulton] were the only ones who would provide dual-fuel on a condensing boiler for a long time."
“We arrived at Fulton because it’s a quality product number one, and number two because you [Fulton] were the only ones who would provide dual-fuel on a condensing boiler for a long time.”
“Fulton products were used to generate cost savings, to generate more LEED points, to be more sustainable with hot-water heating systems.”
Matt Todd, Power Plant Specialist at St. Vincent Fishers, adds, “When it comes to the day-to-day operation of the Vantage boilers, I like how easily accessible the Vantage is for routine maintenance and safety checks.”
“In the two years since I have been here,” says Matt, “I haven’t had enough issues [with the Vantages] that I can be specific enough about to complain about. The squeaky wheel gets the oil, as they say, but [the Vantages] haven’t made much noise at all. They have been wonderful boilers.”
“The squeaky wheel gets the oil, as they say, but [the Vantages] haven't made much noise at all . . . they've been wonderful boilers."
VMP: Easy Installation and Energy Efficient
While the Vantage hydronic condensing boilers were standalone boilers, the two Vertical Multi-Port boilers (VMP-50s) were shipped and installed as part of a fully- skidded system. This system included a boiler feed unit, a 304 stainless steel tank and blowdown separator, and a ModSync controller – in addition to the VMP’s dual-fuel and low-NOx capabilities.
Says Kevin, “The first set [of ICS-20s] was ordered from Fulton in a three-skid arrangement, and those were installed without issue.”
“What’s compelling about this story is that, a year down the road, when we decided we needed to replace these boilers to address long-term sterilization use, we replaced them with Fulton VMPs that were able to pass through standard door-sized openings so that they could be easily installed on-site.”
Commented Byron Koch, “The very tight space of the boiler room presented an installation concern, but luckily the VMP system shipped as multiple units that broke down into sections. Moreover, the only way we could get the boilers installed in the limited space we had was because of the vertical design of the boilers, themselves, which allowed them to fit where other types of boilers, like horizontal firetube and water tube, would not.”
VMP: Critical Duty
Energy savings and installation ease aside, the VMPs at St. Vincent Fishers perform critical hospital functions such as controlling the temperature and humidity in the surgery rooms, which helps maintain infection control. This can literally mean the difference between life and death.
In fact, so critical is the function of boilers in helping maintain infection control in hospitals that the 2013 edition of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers’ (ASHRAE) HVAC Design Manual for Hospitals and Clinics devotes an entire chapter to it. In addition, they acknowledge the importance of installing boilers in hospitals that are low- maintenance, energy-efficient, and reliable.
Comments Matt Todd, “In addition to sterilization and comfort needs, we feed our hospital humidifiers with our Fulton Vertical Multi-Port (VMP) boilers, and they, in turn, feed our operating room, which has to be in the range of certain specs, usually 30 to 60% [humidity].”
“If out of range there, you have downtime in Surgery and the ER. So humidification plays a big role in it too…and that includes our Labor and Delivery C-section room that also has the same strict humidification requirements.”
"Fulton VMP boilers . . . feed our operating room [humidi ers], which has to be in range of certain specs . . . If [not], you have downtime in Surgery and the ER . . ."Matt Todd
Continued Matt, “At St. Vincent, patients are always the number one priority, but number two is the power plant and the boilers that are installed in there.
“They [the boilers] heat the building; they humidify our air; and they sterilize our equipment.
“They are critical to patient care. We have to have them, and Fulton has done a great job in helping us fulfill that need.
Fulton Steam Solutions. Inc.
Fulton Steam Solutions is an American company headquartered in Pulaski, NY. Backed by over 65 years of research, innovation and experience, Fulton designs and manufactures heat transfer equipment for a wide range of commercial and industrial applications.
Fulton Steam Solutions Inc.
Fulton Steam Solutions is part of The Fulton Companies, an American multi-national group of companies headquartered in Pulaski, NY. Backed by over 60 years of research, innovation and experience, Fulton designs and manufactures complex heat transfer equipment for a wide range of commercial and industrial applications.