This month, the Central Florida Chapter hosted a tour of the new Amway Center and the OUC District Cooling Plant that supplies chilled water to this building. The new Amway Center has the latest technologies and innovations in HVAC systems and equipment; our group of 25 attendees explored the many mechanical rooms of this facility. The engineering staff of the Amway Center were readily available to answer questions from our group regarding the following equipment: custom air handlers, pump packages, boilers for re-heat and domestic water use, and refrigeration chillers. Furthermore, this facility has a rain water collection system that can save 800,000 gallons of water annually; this water is used for irrigation and for the high-efficiency flow fixtures located in the restrooms throughout the whole building. It has a total of 875,000 square feet, nearly three times bigger compared to the old arena. Having access to center court was one of the highlights for many in the group.
In addition, our group visited the OUC District Cooling Plant that provides chilled water to the events center. This state of the art facility has the capacity of providing more than 3,000 cooling tons and uses primary variable flow pumping. This District Cooling plant is one of three plants under the supervision of Erick Rocker, Director of Chilled Water Services for OUC. The three plants serve four different districts through the greater Orlando area, and have a combined power providing nearly 50,000 tons of cooling. The cooling towers for this plant perform way under sound criteria for plants located in a residential area. Combined with sound attenuation equipment and ultra quiet fans, these cooling towers have an 88dba sound performance. The architecture of this Central Energy Plant also contributes to the sound attenuation of the cooling towers.
By, Leo Rocha – YEA Chair, 2010-2011
This year the YEA Leadership Weekend (YLW) has held at the ASHRAE Headquarters in Atlanta, GA, October 1-3. The purpose of YLW is to give young engineers the opportunity to network with fellow engineers in ASHRAE, improve their professional and personal skills, and enhance their abilities to serve as leaders in the HVAC Industry. Central Florida ASHRAE sponsors at least one member under the age of 35 to attend this program. This year, our chapter secretary, Joseph de Armas, and chapter treasurer, Anik Patel, attended. Among other activities, they took the Myers-Briggs personality type indicator and learned how to apply it in the work environment.
Joseph and Anik also enjoyed meeting and networking with engineers from across the country. It gave them the opportunity to gauge their progress in their individual careers. Joseph is a design engineer with Jacobs; he focuses on commercial refrigeration, refrigeration for food courts, and plumbing design. Joseph was a participant of the 2006 – 2007 ASHRAE Student Design Team. Anik is a project engineer with Harper Limbach; he is part of the Limbach Engineering Management Trainee Program and project engineer for the Trinity Medical Center. Anik was a participant of the 2007-2008 ASHRAE Student Design Team. Both Anik and Joseph are fellow graduates from the University of Central Florida where they received their Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering degrees.
By, Leo Rocha – YEA Chair, 2010-2011
This has been an exciting year for Central Florida Young Engineers in ASHRAE. During this year, we had the opportunity to present Tech Topic sessions to all of our members. These discussions gave insight to the main speaker’s topic and also served as a networking opportunity. Our young members were able to hear from local industry professionals like Michael Sheerin, Wade Conlan, Firouz Keikavousi, Damon Lynn, Bob Hyttel, Paul Halyard, and Richard King. The topics covered addressed key subjects like Preventive Maintenance, Infection Control, and Sustainability.
The 1st Annual Dodge ball Tournament was held in February. Seven companies from the Central Florida HVAC community participated in this event: Thermal Tech, Inc., Tom Barrow Co., MSI, Harper Limbach, LLC, Peninsula Engineering, Jacobs Engineering, and X-nth. The semi-finalists, Thermal Tech, Inc. and X-nth disputed the title of champion in the final game. X-nth quickly came out on top by eliminating Thermal Tech, Inc in only 1 minute and 34 seconds, the fastest game of the entire day. Congratulations to X-nth (Matt Mikus, JC Le, Matt Hopf, Kim Hopf, Jason Jones, Tom Hoppert, and Tim Hedrick) for winning the 1st Annual Central Florida ASHRAE – YEA Dodgeball Tournament!
Another great achievement for our chapter is the development of the local Mentorship Program. This program was developed with the objective of creating a professional partnership between a YEA member, whether it be a young engineer, recent graduate, or student and a professional member from our chapter. The experienced professional will provide assistance and resources for the transition from college to the work industry (such as interview preparation, career path guidance, professional development, and much more). Currently, we are in the mentor/mentee matching process and we will be announcing our first participants by the end of this month. Thank you for such a great year and we look forward to seeing you for 2010 – 2011.