Green Energy from Waste Plant – New Facility


Waldeck have been tasked with providing full mechanical and electrical design services to enable the safe, efficient delivery of a new green energy plant. The facility will burn over 335,000 tonnes of wood-waste annually, providing 40MW of energy.

The creation of a single stream boiler provides multiple challenges in managing the production of heat reaching over 50°C.

Waldeck are designing the lighting, power, data and telephone, containment system, HVAC, water and public health services, fire alarms and protection systems, to RIBA Stage 4c.

Effective collaborative working with our client is crucial to the delivery of this project.

Waldeck has taken the lead in rigorously planning and implementing the efficient build of this facility by drawing on extensive BIM experience. This includes guiding client engineers on the mechanical and engineering processes required for the production of the building surrounding the single-stream boiler.

Our Solution:

  1. Heat Management

Heat management is critical, with the Employers Requirements dictating that temperatures be kept below 50°C and above 5°C. Temperatures outside of this range would adversely affect the operation of the process plant – reducing output. At peak outdoor temperatures, maintaining the maximum temperature in the boiler hall is extremely difficult. The client was faced with mechanically ventilating the area – a route that is costly, impractical and hard to maintain.

Waldeck identified how to naturally ventilate the area, strategically placing and sizing louvres to get the optimum air flow throughout the building. Advanced thermal modelling software was used to simulate the worst case outdoor weather criteria and air flows through the building with different louvre sizes and positions. Waldeck’s strategy mapped out the optimum positions and size of louvres, which limited temperatures to the safe range – ensuring safety and minimising costs.

  1. Lighting at Height

Lighting areas as high as 20 metres can prove highly complex. Fittings must illuminate high areas, whilst also being accessible for maintenance – particularly important in the facility’s fuel store and turbine hall. Waldeck provided a direct solution, designing high bay fittings above the gantry cranes, allowing maintenance to be performed from the crane.

Through use of specialist software, Navisworks, Waldeck modelled all the walkways and interconnecting stairs in the facility from scratch. The team then referenced the fittings to each walkway, providing a reference plane 2.1m above each walkway level – the height required for the lighting. To provide realistic results, the modelled walkways were exported and used in lighting software to give the locations of the lighting calculation plane. Fixing details were provided for each of the light fittings, ensuring efficient facilities management going forward. As the lighting fixing details were repetitive, the client was able to organise the pre-manufacture of all the lighting brackets prior to delivery to site – saving on construction time.

  1. Coordinating Design

Clever use of Revit and Navisworks software has enabled effective coordination of services throughout the project. Waldeck used Revit to coordinate the mechanical and electrical services with both each other, the structure and the architecture. The Revit model was used to automate output schedules of the M&E equipment from the information contained within the model. The 3D equipment objects have the schedule information embedded within them, so that any changes to the model equipment will automatically update the schedules – avoiding human error.

Navisworks was vital in allowing for major coordination adjustments due to clashes with the process services – preventing costly mistakes at build stage. Through inputting the M&E model into Navisworks, Waldeck has enabled all parties to view the M&E services in line with the process equipment – something that was not available previously due to the type of software used by the process engineers.

Waldeck used its technical know-how to provide carefully planned horizontal cut-throughs of each individual walkway. These 2D drawings show the extent of lighting, power and containment works on each level, whilst being carefully designed to omit services above and below – guarding against duplication of services, which would have distorted equipment counts and have led to the wrong amounts being ordered.

The Results:

Through taking multiple 3D models and combining them into a fully intelligent 3D, labelled design, Waldeck has ensured the accurate costing, build and long term maintenance of the facility. Achievements include:

  • Ensuring maximum accuracy, efficiency and safety throughout the project, through providing 3D model information that allowed process engineers to effectively coordinate their services
  • Strategic use of state-of-art software, reducing capacity for human error and avoiding any costly duplication of services
  • Providing an advanced solution to heat management, enabling the area to be ventilated safely and naturally, avoiding costly mechanical solutions
  • Ensuring that lighting was fitted to illuminate high areas whilst being accessible for maintenance, as well as ensuring effective facilities management for the lifecycle of the facility.