More than 150 people attended the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville (Huntsville Center) Energy Workshop Aug. 1-3 at the Jackson Center located in Huntsville’s Cummins Research Park.
The focus of the workshop was Huntsville Center’s capabilities in the Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) and Utility Energy Services Contracting (UESC) programs.
This year's theme as "Innovation and New Technology Integration."
Jon Winkler, Huntsville Center Energy Division chief, said Huntsville Center holds this annual workshop for customers and stakeholders, utility providers and all Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) holding contracts on the Center’s $1.5 billion Multiple Award Task Order Contract (MATOC).
“Huntsville Center considers events like these essential for ‘cross-leveling’ fundamental knowledge of industry trends and innovations to make what we all do better,” Winkler said.
Huntsville Center’s customers include Army, Navy and Air Force garrisons, Army Material Command (AMC), Installation Management Command (IMCOM), Deputy Chief of Staff of Army (DCS-G9), Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Energy and Sustainment (DASA-ES), Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment (ASA-IEE), Air Force Civil Engineer Center (AFCEC), Washington Headquarters Services (WHS), and Headquarters US Army Corps of Engineers (HQUSACE).
Patty Mooneyham, UESC Program Manager, said Huntsville Center is considered the Army's expert in third-party financing and utility negotiation energy due to its unique ability to provide support world-wide.
“Unlike other U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Divisions and Districts, Huntsville Center has no geographic boundaries allowing the Center to develop, award, and maintain long-term energy projects worldwide,” Mooneyham said.
Guest speakers for the event were Rep. Gary Palmer, Alabama 6th District and member of the House of Representatives’ Subcommittee on Energy, Grid Security, and Climate Change, and Brendan Owens, Assistant Secretary of the Department of Defense, Energy, Environment, and Infrastructure.
Other speakers include Christine Ploschke, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Energy and Sustainability; Susan Call, Department of Defense Installation Clean Energy & Energy Efficiency; William Kidd, Army Installation Management Command G4 Facilities and Logistics director and Drew White, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Installation Readiness Division chief.
For more than a decade the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville (Huntsville Center) has maintained acquisition and contract management of the Department of Defense High Performance Computing Modernization Program (HPCMP).
However, changes to the program are underway to turn over the program to the U.S. Army Engineer Research Development Center (ERDC) contracting activity, Vicksburg, Miss., as early as September.
Patrick Parten, Huntsville Center HPCMP program manager, said although the acquisition portion of the program is moving to ERDC, there is no change to the mission of the HPCMP.
“Since the announcement that the portfolio of projects would transition to ERDC, we’ve worked closely with the HPCMP and the ERDC Contracting Office to ensure a smooth transition of all work with little or no impact to customers or the mission,” Parten said.
“The program continues to accelerate technology development and transition into superior defense capabilities through the strategic application of HPC, networking and computational expertise.”
In 2012, Huntsville Center and ERDC created a partnership to procure the follow-on integrated technical services needed by the HPCMP. To meet the demanding, ever–changing, technical requirements of the HPCMP, Huntsville Center’s Facility Technology Integration Division developed a highly skilled, multi-disciplined Project Delivery Team (PDT) solely dedicated to the execution of contracts in support of the HPCMP.
Over the decade under Huntsville Center, PDT managed a portfolio of projects valued at more than $2 billion and obligated over $1.4 billion over the life of the program. The PDT includes subject matter experts in the areas of program and project management, acquisition, engineering, contracting, resource management, and legal counsel. Additionally, the PDT has members with vast amounts of experience in information technology, networking, cybersecurity, software, hardware, training (in-person and virtual) and communications infrastructure.
Parten said Angela Wilson, Huntsville Center HPCMP contracting section chief, has been instrumental in the program’s success while handling a portfolio of contracts including Technology Insertion Basic Ordering Agreements, High Performance Computing Integrated Technical Services – Unrestricted, HPC Integrated Technical Services – Restricted, HPCMP Program Administrative Support Services, Navy Business Services and ERDC Business Services.
The HPCMP was initiated in 1992 in response to congressional direction to modernize the Department of Defense laboratories' High-Performance Computing (HPC) capabilities. The HPCMP was assembled out of a collection of small high performance computing departments, each with a rich history of supercomputing experience that had independently evolved within the Army, Air Force, and Navy laboratories and test centers. The HPC’s tools solve complicated and time-consuming problems with researchers expanding their ability to solve modern military and security problems using HPC hardware and software.
The HPCMP operates five DoD Supercomputing Resource Centers (DSRCs) with associated Local Area Networks (LANs) / Wide Area Networks (WANs) and develops HPC software applications and support environments.
The five DSRCs are: Army Research Laboratory, Adelphi, Maryland; Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio; Navy Oceanographic, Stennis Center, Mississippi; U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Engineering Research and Development Center, Vicksburg, Mississippi, and Maui High Performance Computing Center, Maui, Hawaii.
Two important Army installations are using a tool provided by the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville to support the Army’s Installation Energy and Water Resilience Policy.
The tool is the Energy Savings and Performance Contracts (ESPC) program administered by Huntsville Center. ESPCs utilize private capital to make infrastructure improvements and new efficiencies without tapping into the capital budget to support and enable the warfighter and meet energy and environmental mandates.
Considered the Army’s expert in ESPCs, Huntsville Center implemented the contracts to assist the installations in supporting the Army Climate Strategy by providing energy resilience and energy cybersecurity and reducing energy and water use (as well as carbon and greenhouse gas emissions) to improve readiness and save taxpayers money.
At Army Garrison Carlisle Barracks, Penn., the ESPC project there is in its fifth year of the performance period and has exceeded the guaranteed savings by $62,973. The home to the U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks is the nation's second-oldest active military base.
The project at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, is in year six of the performance period and has exceeded the guaranteed savings amount by $325,100. Fort McCoy is a 60,000-acre Army Reserve installation and home to the 88th Regional Support Command, a Total Force training center responsible for enhancing readiness for more than 100,000 military personnel annually.
Hannah Niedergeses, Energy Division Project Manager, said energy conservation measures for these projects include lighting upgrades, energy monitoring and control system upgrades, which will optimize the operation of HVAC systems throughout the buildings.
“There are other organizations that award ESPCs, but the thing that makes Huntsville Center stand out from the others is that we have a centralized project management ‘one-stop-shop,’” Niedergeses said.
“The long-term partnership between the Huntsville Center’s Energy Division, the garrisons, energy savings contractors and other Army stakeholders requires a high degree of commitment and work in good faith to enable successful outcomes.”
Niedergeses said the advantages of implementing ESPC projects through Huntsville Center include the program’s experience with ESPC project execution. She said the programs centralized project management enables a standardized and streamlined process by a dedicated and experienced project development team.
“We provide comprehensive program support including engineering technical expertise, project management expertise, cost analysis, legal review, and measurement and verification services through a third-party,” Niedergeses said.
“We also ensure compliance with all Department of Defense policies and regulations of third-party financing.”
Huntsville Center ESPC program support provides a tremendous value, said Richard McCoy, Carlisle Barracks energy manager.
“Since the inception of our (ESPC) contract six years ago, the contractor has been monitoring our energy usage and HVAC operations in five buildings. This has resulted in reduced energy costs each year and assists the garrison in keeping our HVAC equipment running efficiently.”
The U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville has signed off on a $67 million Energy Resilience & Conservation Investment Program (ERCIP) contract to provide Rock Island Arsenal (RIA) with secure, self-sufficient energy.
A subsection of the Defense-Wide Military Construction (MILCON) program, ERCIP specifically funds projects that save energy and water, reduce Department of Defense energy costs, improve energy resilience and security, and contribute to mission assurance.
Huntsville Center Energy Division’s ERCIP is the Army’s requirement development experts providing planning and technical support to the Army by validating all ERCIP projects before they are submitted to the Department of Defense to compete for funding.
“To fulfill the Army’s energy resilience requirements, Rock Island Arsenal must submit a project proposal to the Office of the Secretary of Defense to compete for funding,” said Richard Moore, ERCIP project manager.
“It’s the job of Huntsville Center’s ERCIP validation team to lend technical support and planning guidance by validating the project.”
Rock Island Arsenal Rock Island Arsenal is a major Army installation employing more than 6,000 military, civilian and contractor personnel and is home to more than 80 tenant organizations providing critical products and services to all of U.S. armed services.
This project supports Rock Island’s resilience to the effects of climate change by securing self-sufficient generation using a diverse set of assets including solar, hydro-electric and battery storage, alleviating reliance on its onsite fuel storage or the serving utility during manmade and natural emergencies.
The contract calls for a planned construct of a microgrid powered by approximately 14 MW natural gas (NG) generators, up to 3 MW solar photovoltaic array, and a 400 kW / 1.6 MWh battery energy storage system integrated with the existing 2.8 MW hydro-electric power plant totaling approximately 20 MW.
“The microgrid system will supply sufficient electricity for continued operation of all critical loads across Rock Island Arsenal during a grid outage for weeks and it will double the renewable energy capacity to almost 50% of critical load,” Moore said.
Absent of the microgrid solution, an extended outage at Rock Island Arsenal could disrupting manufacturing processes and operations vital to U.S. military efforts.
“We validated the project definition, technical feasibility, appropriate technology, estimated energy savings, and associated Life Cycle Cost Analysis by calculating the Savings to Investment Ratio (SIR) and payback years through a comprehensive process,” Moore said.
Huntsville Center’s Energy Division provides cost savings to customers through an array of services including: critical energy analysis; planning and consultation; project management; acquisition support/tools; alternative financing and other services.
Doug Van Werden, RIA Energy Manager, said the ERCIP project will allow RIA to operate during an electrical outage for as long as needed with no impact to the installation mission.
“Currently the post can only provide about 10-15% of the emergency power required,” he said. “In the end, this project will allow RIA to continue supporting the war fighter world-wide during power outages while decreasing the post’s daily greenhouse gas production. A win-win for the post the and the U.S. military world-wide.”