Stanford’s Ice Plant was constructed in 1999 and provides additional cooling capacity to meet Stanford’s summer cooling loads without having to operate electric chillers during periods of high electrical rates. The Ice Plant houses five 2500 ton electric rotary screw chillers and 120,000 ton hours of ice storage coils located in a four-million gallon tank under the Jordan Quad parking lot. The Ice Plant chillers operate in the middle of the night when electrical rates are low, “building” ice in the tank. The ice is “burned” to provide campus air conditioning the following day when electrical rates are high. This approach allows Stanford to take advantage of inexpensive nighttime electrical rates, and avoid expensive daytime electrical demand charges.
120,000 ton-hours of ice can be stored. This is the equivalent of:
- 120,000 window air conditioners operating for 1 hour
- Enough cooling for about 2,000 single-family homes on a hot summer day
- 10,000,000 pounds of ice
- 60,000,000 ice cubes
The ice is built and stored on 360 miles of 1” steel tubing in a 4,000,000 gallon tank located under the Jordan Quad parking lot.
This is the third largest ice storage facility in the world.
- The plant has five 2,500 ton screw compressor chillers.
- Each chiller has a 2,250 H.P. motor operating at 12,000 volts.
- Each chiller uses 3,400 pounds of environmentally friendly anhydrous ammonia as a refrigerant.
- Cooling energy is transferred with a 25% ethylene glycol / water mixture much like the antifreeze used in automobiles. 200,000 gallons are required to fill the system.
- The Ice Plant is 100% computer controlled and operated remotely. The plant is inspected once every eight hours.
- Stanford's current average peak electrical demand is 30 megawatts, the equivalent of about 15,000 single-family homes.
- Ice storage technology saves Stanford about 8 megawatts of peak electrical demand and 6 megawatts of average summer daytime load over a conventional cooling system.