One of the more pervasive challenges on new construction and renovation projects is figuring out where to put all of the control panels. Project coordinators and contractors are constantly faced with having to shoehorn panels into spaces that are not big enough to accommodate them, leading to headaches and project delays all around.
Technology is ever-expanding to new building systems, resulting in more control panels that need to find placement. Not long ago, electrical rooms typically contained basics like transformers, electrical and UPS panels, fire alarm systems, and security panels. Now, these same spaces are expected to contain an additional array of control panels that may include lighting, daylight harvesting, sound masking, digital antenna systems (DAS), wireless access points (WAP), shade controls, etc., while meeting NEC clearance requirements. Almost invariably, panel placement is not included on original design drawings nor on project 3D modeling, and additional panel space for existing systems and future expansion is seldom provided. Oftentimes, the intention is to install these panels in IDF closets or MDF rooms, which usually are already jam-packed with equipment, making accommodation difficult.
The solution to this problem is for each contractor to provide control panel quantities, dimensions, and power requirements to the project coordinator as early on in the project as possible. Wherever possible, future expansion needs should be identified up-front as well. Inclusion of this information in the model benefits the owner, the project coordinator, and contractors, not to mention the project budget and schedule.
Omni Instrumentation & Electrical Services, Inc. is a premier instrumentation and electrical contractor, providing superior total care solutions since 1986. Services include instrument installation, tubing installation, instrument calibration, control loop testing, startup and commissioning, power and lighting, process control wiring, BMS wiring, telecommunications and data wiring, fire alarm wiring, security wiring, process network wiring, and control panel fabrication. Omni Instrumentation & Electrical Services, Inc., is certified in Foundation Fieldbus, Profibus, DeviceNet and ASI-Bus installation.