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California Faces Multiple Increased Risks for Power Outages

The state of California is known to be near, if not at the top of the list when it comes to most power outages in the United States. The most common causes of California power outages are related to extreme weather. California is prone to extreme heat, droughts, winds and deadly wildfires and this year is no exception as this extreme weather is predicted to hit California once again.

With that being said, it’s vital that you are prepared for both planned and unplanned power outages. Unfortunately, as most of you know, there are still global supply chain issues, resulting in lead times that are longer than expected. Therefore, if you’re looking to be proactive versus reactive, start planning now. We can help with all your power generation needs!

To assist in your preparation, we have prepared a list of factors to be aware of that could increase the risk of power outages this summer:

  1. Extreme Heat

During the hot summers that California encounters, more people use power to cool down their homes and business; this greatly increases power demand. When this heat is combined with adverse weather conditions that could reduce output from other power sources, system operators may also be forced to use emergency procedures to prevent catastrophic grid failures and extended outages. In addition to that, the extreme heat will cause electrical equipment to fail.

  1. Drought

In relation to California’s hot temperatures, droughts may also increase the risk of a power outage as they can strain the electricity supply. Hydroelectricity is another energy source that California highly depends on and if its reservoirs run low – likely due to extreme heat – there will be a significant drop in hydroelectric generation. With this drop in energy production, the chances of an electricity shortages rises.

  1. Wind

Extreme heat coupled with drought conditions gets exponentially worse when extreme winds come into play. This is what California is faced with every year when the Santa Ana winds start blowing or when the state is hit with the fierce Diablo Winds. Beside knocking out power, these winds can cause power line breakages which will spark wildfires.

  1. Wildfire Season

Summer and early fall in California tend to also be referred to as “wildfire season”.  Wildfires are devastating, unpredictable and they move extremely quickly. They can destroy transmission lines and electrical infrastructure which results in power outages that may last days or weeks.

  1. Planned De-Energization Events – Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPSs)

PSPSs are a newer, more proactive solution where utility companies shut off power during extreme and dangerous weather conditions to reduce the changes of wildfires breaking out in high-risk areas.  Numerous high-risk areas have been identified in California and, for that reason, these events are anything but out of the ordinary for California residents and businesses.

  1. Supply Shortages

As mentioned above, hot California summers can result in low electricity generation. At the same time, electricity demand peaks during periods of extreme heat as, people tend to use their air conditioning all at the same time. Because of this, the grid will be challenged and will struggle to meet the energy demands.

All these factors listed above, substantially increase the risk of power outages. We know that, in today’s world, the majority of industries and businesses rely on electricity to be operational and to provide their goods and services to their customer base. Therefore, these hazards cannot be ignored. We want to ensure that you and your businesses are safe, with the ability to still maximize your uptime. We can support you by maintaining your existing generators, upgrading you to a new generator where it makes sense, or providing backup power generation solutions.

Contact us for more information. Our team is always happy to help!

888.682.6888 or info@collicutt.com

Find more solutions here!

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Collicutt Becomes Alberta’s Distributor for MTU/Rolls-Royce Onsite Energy for Diesel Generators

Collicutt Energy Services Becomes Alberta’s Distributor of MTU/Rolls-Royce Onsite Energy for Diesel Generators

Collicutt Energy Services is proud to announce that as of January 1, 2022, we are Alberta’s distributor for MTU/Rolls-Royce Onsite Energy for diesel power generation.

This partnership now allows Collicutt to offer our clients both diesel and natural gas power generation options, meeting more client needs by providing them with more variety, reliability and customer assistance.

MTU has over 60 years of power generation expertise along with over 100 years of experience in diesel engine engineering worldwide. That knowledge along with Collicutt’s power generation experience makes this a very strategic partnership.

MTU’s diesel gensets are designed for maximum reliability, featuring low fuel consumption, long service intervals and low emissions to reduce costly downtime. The MTU product portfolio for diesel power generation includes the MTU Series 4000, 2000, 1600, 0080 and 0225 and covers a power range of 27-3,250kW (60 Hz). With mature and reliable design, they are designed to operate in any situation— even in extreme conditions.

The combination of MTU’s product offering with Collicutt’s in-house expertise in power system design, build, and project management, allows Collicutt to deliver a higher standard of power generation service and products throughout Alberta.

In addition to our current solutions, Collicutt is now able to offer more mission-critical solutions along with other applications that include:

  • Data Centers
  • Healthcare and hospitals
  • Sewage and water treatment
  • Hotels
  • Airports
  • Commercial and public buildings
  • Agriculture
  • Aquatic Centers
  • Government buildings
  • Greenhouses
  • Landfills
  • Industrial manufacturing
  • Nuclear power plants
  • Rentals
  • CHP
  • Residential and utilities
  • Power stations

Collicutt continues to lead the power generation industry throughout North America and beyond. Our relationship with MTU/Rolls-Royce Power Systems started in California in 2015 and has continued to grow since. In June of 2021 we also announced the new agreement regarding the distributorship of natural gas power generation and oil & gas engines in Alberta.  This 2022 announcement is quite the milestone as it gives Collicutt the advantage of offering our clients more comprehensive power generation solutions since both natural gas and diesel options can be utilized.

 

Call us for more information at 888.682.6888.

See our News &  Careers page for more announcements and blog posts.

Check out our Equipment site here!

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New Towable Generator Product Line

Collicutt recently published an article in the BOE Report to announce a new product line of towable generators! We are very excited about this announcement as these units were produced in-house!

The first production of these generators was for two (2) 500kW standby/450 kW prime rated units. Creating these units took a lot of time, effort and research. The units are trailer mounted, 450kW, Tier 4 Final, prime rated, diesel generator packages. They are powered by Scania’s 16L, V8 , engines. A tier 4 final solution is best in class for fuel efficiency and emissions after treatment. These units have a lockable level 1 enclosure for increased security, two voltage outputs (208V & 480V) and so much more.

We polled our in-house experts, external clients, and industry contacts to provide feedback on the standard design, and optional adders that should be part of the build. We believe we created a truly standalone product.

For more details, read our BOE Report article.
Check out our newly designed brochure for more information on the product specifications by downloading the case study below.

Call or email us for more information: 888.682.6888 or info@collicutt.com

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Collicutt’s Focus Is Problem Solving

Collicutt was recently featured in the November issue of Resource in Focus Magazine!

“As a leading manufacturer of custom power generation equipment, Collicutt Energy’s highly trained and experienced team designs, engineers, and manufactures power solutions, while also working to continually raise the standards for customers, whether repairing, overhauling, servicing or performing preventative maintenance on all brands of engine. Collicutt’s mandate includes offering a wide variety of services while keeping customer downtime to a minimum.

This family-run business has recently experienced exciting growth, including the company’s role as a distributor for products including MTU, Waukesha, Motortech, and Scania – in particular, expanding territory in Alberta as a distributor for MTU/Rolls Royce Power Systems for oil & gas systems and natural gas power generation.”

Learn more about what Collicutt does and how we provide unique solutions to our clients by downloading the full article with the case study link below!

For more solution options see our Services and Solutions pages.

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Supply Chain Disruptions

Most of us are aware that commodity pricing and supply chain issues have been very problematic for the last 8 to 12 months. There are many reasons for this, some of which can be blamed on the pandemic and the associated factory slowdowns and outages.

From what we have seen, steel prices are surging because of high market demand globally. According to data from the Census Bureau, unfilled orders for steel in the last quarter were at the highest level in five years while inventories were near a 3-1/2-year low. This is driving up product cost at the factory and with the majority of our suppliers.

Specialty components like microchips are in high demand and cannot be produced fast enough to meet this demand. This is causing delays in many suppliers lead times locally and internationally.

Regardless of the underlying supply chain issues, these disruptions are affecting everything from common electronics to vehicles to generator and enclosure manufacturing.

What We Are Doing

Collicutt has been experiencing these challenges but we have a solid group of suppliers that are working with us to minimize cost increases and to reduce schedule delays as much as possible.

We will continue to keep you informed and do everything in our power to maintain and expedite schedules and optimize product pricing.

Also note that Collicutt maintains a large inventory of parts and generators that are available for immediate shipment. You can view our inventory on our website at www.equipment.collicutt.com

What You Can Do

If you are planning on a project in the near future it is best to engage our team as soon as possible so we can get your order on the factory and lock in pricing and delivery times.

Please feel free to call us or email us for further information.

888-682-6888    info@collicutt.com

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How to Properly Design and Size A Generator

Introduction

Specifying and sizing a generator for your project can be an overwhelming task . . . but it doesn’t have to be! Collicutt and MTU have a great tool available to assist with this task and simplify it as much as possible.

The tool is called PSSPEC and it is available for download using this link.

What follows is a brief introduction to the PSSPEC tool and how it can be used. This is not meant to be a detailed user manual but it does provide enough detail to get you off to a great start on your generator sizing project.

Should you have questions, want training on the tool, or need further assistance, please reach out to our Collicutt team at the contact information at the bottom of this article.

Getting Started

Once you download, install, and open PSSPEC, you will see the following screen:

 

Select the “Start a New Sizing Project” button. The following screen will appear and this is where the real work begins!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From this screen you can enter:

  • Customer data and add new customers
  • Project specific Notes
  • The Basic generator information – This is where generator information such as; frequency, voltage, fuel type, rating type, temperature rise, load factor percentage, UL2200 requirements, customer supplied cooling system, and PMG requirements are checked.
  • Specific Site Conditions – this contains the location, elevation, and temperature data
  • Intermittent Loads – This is where you define the loads that your generator will be expected to handle (there is more information on this below).
  • Intake and Exhaust information
  • Advanced options – this allows you to select the % THVD limit

Note that this is an active menu system so an entry in one menu adjusts the menu selections in the other areas.

Once you are completed your entries, click on the “Accept” button and the following screen appears.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adding Loads

This is where you need to understand the electrical loads that your generator will be powering.

A project’s electrical loading contains a sequence of steps that are defined by the user. Within each step, loads are placed that fit the requirements of the application. All loads within a step are assumed to start at the same time, and steps occur sequentially one after another once the previous step has reached steady state (i.e., generator set has fully recovered to nominal voltage).

PSSPEC offers templates to use for many different types of loads (see graphic below). These templates allow easy selection of the needed variables for the selected load type. The PSSPEC application makes assumptions based on the load type, load criteria, and information entered by the PSSPEC user and populates default values for each load parameter accordingly.

 

 

 

You can select these loads for a particular step by selecting the step and clicking on the “Add Load” button. The screen shown above appears and you select one of the options which will bring you to a screen that allows you to adjust specific parameters for the selected load.

One you are finished adding load steps and loads, you can select the “Sizing and Rating” button on the left side of the screen. This starts the generator sizing and selection process.

 

Sizing and Rating

When you click the “Sizing and Rating” button, PSSPEC runs its calculations and selects the recommended best fit generator using all of the data that you have provided. This is illustrated in the graphic below.

 

 

Note that this window will also display oversized and undersized generator sets that may meet project requirements.

Any generator set in the list can be selected and a sizing report can be generated to provide a ‘mini spec sheet’ for the user. Multiple sizing reports can be created for different generator set models. Just select the generator sets you are interested in and click the Report button that shows up on the left of the screen (see the graphic below).

 

 

These reports can be used as a convenient quality check to ensure the generator selected meets your design requirements and then included as part of your generator specification package. If you find errors or things that you missed you can go back through the process described above and make the changes and additions and recreate the report to include your changes.

In Conclusion

This was a very condensed tutorial which illustrated only a small fraction of PSSPEC’s capabilities. The best way to understand it’s capabilities is to dive in and start sizing some of your projects!

If you would like us to provide some training for your organization or just need to have some questions answered, be sure to call us or email us at the link below.

888.682.6888    info@collicutt.com

 

Note: Sizing of the generator is the responsibility of the “engineer of record.” Input data and the output from PSSPEC must be reviewed and approved by the responsible engineering firm.

 

Finally, see these article for related content:

 

Want to learn more? Collicutt has a new PSSPEC webinar available that will give you a thorough walk through on how to utilize the tool.

 

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Do You Need a Generator Specification? Let Our Software Do the Work For You!

Many of Collicutt’s long time customers are engineering firms. One of the things these engineering firms need for each project is a prepared set of bid packages for each major scope of work on that project. These bid packages will be sent out to potential suppliers of that scope of work so that the supplier can propose a solution complete with an accurate price.

The Challenge

This means that the bid package must have sufficient detail to get price certainty. Without this detail, prices between suppliers will be difficult to compare and the engineering firm will have no way of knowing if they are selecting the best solution.

To solve this problem, the bid package must contain a specification that defines the exact performance details for the piece of equipment or structure under development.

One of the most important specifications that these engineering firms need to complete is an emergency generator specification. This specification defines the generator that will provide emergency power should the power grid fail. Among many things, this specification needs to contain requirements for the following:

  • Submittal process
  • Quality assurance process
  • Warranty
  • Approved manufacturers and approved manufacturing locations
  • Industry standards compliance (UL, CSA, ANSI, NFPA, EPA, etc.)
  • Performance requirements
  • Engine requirements
  • Alternator requirements
  • Electric load definition
  • Switchgear requirements
  • Fuel type(s) and fuel system requirements
  • Environment constraints (emissions, altitude, temperature, size, noise, etc.)
  • Control and monitoring
  • Overcurrent and fault protection
  • Voltage regulation
  • Enclosure requirements
  • Installation, interconnections (fuel, cooling-system, exhaust-system, grounding and electrical connections)
  • Commissioning, testing, and start up
  • End user training
  • Life cycle maintenance

Although it sounds simple enough, the creation of specification like this can be a complicated and daunting task!

The Solution

So, what do you do if you are in this situation and don’t have a detailed specification for an emergency power generator set but need one for your project?

You can leverage our unique sizing software to estimate the generator capacity required for your project as well as create your own set of specifications. Just answer a detailed list of questions and the software will prepare an MS Word style document that you can further edit to fit your bid specification package.

Call us or email us at the link below for assistance or download our software using this link and build your own custom specification!

888-682-6888    info@collicutt.com

You can also download the 260kW NG genset spec that is attached to this post to get an idea of what a generator spec looks like.

Finally, see this article for related content – Don’t Make This Mistake When Buying Your Generator!

 

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Customized Rental Solution!

One of our customers in Beverly Hills was doing a major office renovation and they required temporary electric power for the duration of the work. This seemed like a simple enough request for our rental group to handle but there were some challenges that had to be addressed!

The Challenge

The challenges were generally centered around the constraints of the job site and included:

  1. The temporary generator could not be parked on the street due to city bylaws
  2. The only other available locations for a temporary generator came with their own challenges:
    • A very small underground parking stall with extremely tight access and inadequate ventilation to allow an engine to run for an extended period of time
    • The top of a parking structure which would require a crane to lift it into place
  3. Noise restrictions were in place due to the proximity to other businesses
  4. California  has some of the strictest emissions requirements and building code requirements in North America. This means that power generation equipment must be able to meet the strictest emission standards and must be designed to handle earthquakes which are also common to California

 

The Solution

Our rental team worked with the customer to determine the potential power demand that they would experience during their office renovation. Once our team understood this requirement, we began to look at our rental fleet and selected a few potential options. From these options we narrowed down the selection to a rental unit that was the correct size, met the noise restrictions, and met the emissions requirements.

We then worked with our customer to provide a temporary venting solution for the generator exhaust. This had to meet the local building code requirements as well as the exhaust venting specifications for the generator. Once this was done, our rental team coordinated the generator drop off and set-up (props to our delivery team for backing this unit into place!) ensuring that our customer had the electric power they needed for the duration of their office building renovation project!

 

For more information on a rental solution or any other power generation solution, contact us via email or at the number below:

1-888-682-6888 or info@collicutt.com

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Data Center Expansion

One of our data center customers in southern California had recently been experiencing an increase in demand so they began expanding their center’s capacity. As the number of data servers increased, their requirement for emergency back up power was also increasing. Unreliable power is the biggest threat a data center can face! Power quality issues can cause equipment failure, downtime, data corruption or data loss, none of which are acceptable outcomes. So, this requirement to upgrade their emergency generators was critical!

Because Collicutt has been providing service work for them and their existing 2250kW generators for a number of years, we sat down with them to understand the challenge that they were facing.

The Design Challenge

Our customer had a few design constraints that needed to be solved. They obviously had a emergency power shortage but they also had the following issues that had to be addressed:

  • Size restrictions with their facility limited the footprint of the generators that they could use
  • California  has some of the strictest emissions requirements and building code requirements in North America. This means that power generation equipment must be able to meet the strictest emission standards and must be designed to handle earthquakes which are also common to California
  • Noise restrictions due to the proximity to other businesses
  • An existing generator that was no longer up to code and could not be made compliant
  • Switchgear upgrade project running concurrently with the generator upgrades
  • Programming to ensure paralleling of the units worked seamlessly with all the upgrades underway

The Solution

For the first unit they required, we designed and provided a custom 2250kw standby generator with a level 2 sound attenuated enclosure and a 3540 gallon subbase fuel tank. The fuel tank is UL142 double walled with secondary containment and rested just beneath the generator base. The enclosure had fixed intake louvers and a vertical discharge plenum to help hamper excessive noise to protect surrounding businesses. The enclosure was custom made with aluminum side and roof panels to ensure a non-corrosive housing designed for prolonged life. We also provided a critical grade silencer to quiet the large generators exhaust to meet city noise restrictions.

When the trucks showed up on site with the first generator and all its components, the customer’s crane company was a “no-show” due to equipment failure. As the old saying goes, “time is money” and a data center construction site is no exception. Collicutt was able to call on one of our crane contractors and get them out to site on short notice. They were able to successfully offload all of the equipment and maintain the schedule!

Our customer has now placed an order for a second 2250kW with the same basic specifications. Collicutt will be removing their non-compliant generator to make room for this second 2250kW. We will also assist them in selling the non-compliant unit using our  surplus equipment website and sales team.

In addition to this, we we able to provide paralleling programming and implementation so that when the new generators are installed and the switchgear upgrades are completed, they will be able to parallel these two new units with their existing generators.

This solution will provide them with high quality emergency power for years to come helping to guarantee their customers have secure data and data processing regardless of inevitable utility power outages.

 

 

 

For more information on this or any other power generation solution, contact us via email or at the number below:

1-888-682-6888 or info@collicutt.com

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Collicutt Energy Services Expands its Territory as Alberta’s Distributor for MTU/Rolls Royce Power Systems

Collicutt Energy Services Expands its Territory as Alberta’s Distributor for MTU/Rolls Royce Power Systems

Collicutt Energy Services has signed an agreement with MTU/Rolls Royce Power Systems to expand its territory to distribute MTU systems and product lines in Alberta starting June 1, 2021.  This includes natural gas power generation and oil & gas engines.

A subsidiary of Rolls-Royce, MTU Onsite Energy Corp. is one of the top power system manufacturers globally and has been serving the oil and gas industry for over 70 years with the highest standards in durability, reliability and technological expertise. MTU series of diesel engines offer exceptional efficiency and durability to meet the rigorous demands of industry operations. In addition, MTU engines meet and exceed worldwide emission standards with optimum fuel economy, designed by leading-edge engineers pioneering emissions policies.

Along with the entire line of MTU Series of engines, Collicutt Energy Services adds the Detroit Diesel Series 60 engine line to its robust solution-based products and services. The MTU 1000, 1100, 1300, 1500, 1600, 2000 and 4000 engine series cover a power range of 75-3010 kW and 101-4036 bhp.

MTU’s complete range of products includes diesel engines and systems for:

  • Power units for mechanical and hydraulic drives for rotary tables, draw works, mud pumps and other well services
  • Generator sets for electric drilling rigs for rotary tables, draw works and mud pumps
  • Generator sets for continuous duty and prime power
  • Fracturing units
  • Nitrogen vaporizing/generating units
  • Cement pumps
  • Blenders
  • Coil tubing

The partnership with MTU allows Collicutt Energy Services to broaden services to a larger geographical area while aligning its sales and service team with the forefront of industry innovation and advancement.

As an MTU parts and service provider, Collicutt Energy Services’ trained technicians uphold exacting maintenance and warranty requirements to ensure productivity, safety and efficiency in the harshest of conditions. As a result, the company’s customer base will benefit from streamlined sales, service and warranty work on new and existing oil and gas equipment, reducing costly downtime and safety risk.

This cooperative distributorship with MTU/Rolls Royce Power Systems first began in California in 2015 and now allows the company to maintain elevated supply and serviceability in Alberta’s abundant oil and gas industry.

Collicutt MTU Announcement – June 2021

Check out our announcement on EnergyNow and the BOE Report. 

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