Tyler Junior College


Tyler Junior College Gets an Energy Efficient System


Tyler Junior College (TJC), a two-year community college located in Tyler, Texas, is one of the largest community colleges in Texas. With a steadily growing enrollment, TJC currently has more than 12,000 credit students each year with an additional 20,000 continuing education enrollments.

In 2009, college officials were forced to take a hard look at a failing heating plant. The campus heating system consisted of two hot water loops, tied to heating plants located on opposite ends of the campus. After 23 years of service, the steel fire tube boilers in one of the plants were in dire need of either substantial repairs or replacement. College officials consulted with RBI manufacturer’s representative Mechanical Concepts of Shreveport, Louisiana to evaluate the project and make recommendations.

After an in-depth system efficiency study provided by the experts at Mechanical Concepts, it was determined that by replacing the current units, whose operating efficiencies are 75%, with new high efficiency RBI Futera Series XLF units that a realized savings in annual energy consumption alone would equal over $118,000. Add the additional expense of $130,000 currently spent on annual maintenance of the existing boilers for a grand total of $248,000 of potential first year savings with the installation of the RBI’s Futera XLF boilers. The end result was an almost immediate return on the college’s substantial investment with an expected payback of less than 2 years. College officials decided that immediate replacement of the aging system made the most economic sense.

Not only did the financial incentive of replacing the boilers make the decision easy for the college, but it was truly a winning situation all around as the project also supported their “Going Green” initiative. RBI’s Futera Series XLF would not only use over 17% less energy but it would also reduce the emissions of the current boiler plant by an astonishing 91% substantially reducing the campus’ carbon footprint.

In the fall of 2009, four (4) million BTUh XLF boilers, which would satisfy approximately two-thirds of the heating needs for the entire campus, were installed. All XLF boilers are controlled by HeatNet, RBI’s state-of-the-art integrated boiler management system which provides precise system control maintaining peak efficiency thru continuous system monitoring and firing rate modulation. The HeatNet System is tied into the campus’ BACnet-based building management system allowing for constant performance communication for ultimate system control.

According to Kurt Lyles of Mechanical Concepts, the RBI XLF units took up only half the space of the old boilers. The compact size of these powerful units will allow them to eventually install the next four units within the same mechanical building that the first RBI units were installed, eliminating the need for the second building.

College officials are extremely pleased with the new RBI hydronic heating system that they are now planning to replace the remaining two steel fire tube boilers, which were replaced recently and are only five years old, with four additional RBI XLF units.

Proud of their new boiler room, not only does TJC welcome the opportunity to walk anyone through their physical plant to showcase the boiler system installation but they also use the facility as an educational tool for their vocational students. The installation has also become a showcase for other local institutions as well.