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 ​​Utilities Distribution
Utilities are distributed to NIH buildings through underground walkable tunnels (2 miles), concrete trenches (2 miles), natural gas lines (3.6 miles), domestic water lines (12 miles) and steam and chilled water pipes (over 7 miles). There are over 300 manholes located around the campus, facilitating inspection and maintenance of the grounds utilities.

CUP Facts and Figures
As of January, 2016 Chilled Water Steam
Area served 11.8 million sq. ft. 11.8 million sq. ft.
Energy Sources   
Number of units 12 chillers 5 boilers, 1 cogeneration plant
Design capacity 60,000 tons 980 kPPH
Firm capacity 55,000 tons 980 kPPH
Available capacity 60,000 tons 980 kPPH
Supply temperature 44 F 450 F
Return temperature 54 F N/A
Supply pressure 110 psi 165 psi
Piping type Welded steel, schedule 80 with insulation Welded steel, schedule 80 with insulation
Piping trench length >7 miles >7 miles
  Electrical Steam
Cogeneration plant capacity 23 MW 180 kPPH

Following Facts:

The Central Utility Plant (CUP) burns 3 billion standard cubic feet of natural gas per year to generate 1.8 billion pounds of steam and 190,000 megawatt hours (MWh) per year of electricity. 
The amount of natural gas burned in the CUP in a year is equivalent to 26 million gallons of gasoline.
In addition, NIH purchases 300,000 MWh per year of electricity.
The total energy use (fuel and electricity) at NIH is equivalent to the energy used by 50,000 average Maryland homes.
The total electricity use by NIH, 490,000 MWh per year, is equivalent to the electricity use by 35,000 Maryland homes.
In order to meet NIH’s air conditioning needs, NIH operates a large chiller plant.  The chiller plant peak electrical power requirement is 36 MW.
Annual power use is 165,000 MWh per year which is equivalent to the power used for air conditioning by more than 100,000 Maryland households.

This page was last updated on Sep 20, 2018