There are many different types of technical buildings in use on offshore drilling locations today. What the building is called may change depending on where it is located and what it is housing.
For example, a building that houses transformers can be known as an e-house, electrical skid house, or an integrated power house, all depending upon the other equipment it houses and where it’s deployed.
The engineers at Specialist Services RedGuard have built custom technical buildings for clients around the world and have heard just about every name they’ve been given. Together let’s take a look at what a technical building is and some of the most common names for them.
A technical building is often a prefabricated building constructed to house and protect equipment located in hazardous or harsh environments. This might include include housing control rooms, instruments, transformers, data centers, and other types of electrical equipment. They are constructed to withstand extreme conditions and meet a client’s required technical specifications, which allows them to be utilized in a wide variety of situations.
The custom nature of technical buildings allows them to be used across many different industries. This could include the energy sector, the construction industry, or industrial manufacturing. Even within an industry, different types of technical buildings might be used. In energy, a substation module might be used to help power a rig site in west Texas. A motor control center building will control equipment within a petrochemical plant. A renewable energy enclosure will protect batteries storing electricity from wind farms.
Technical buildings are used in a wide range of applications, and because they are constructed to meet client-specific requirements, there are many types in use today. These buildings are generally named after the equipment that they house and protect. The following is a list of the more common structures and their functions. While this is not an all-inclusive list, it provides a general overview of the common names given to technical buildings.
An Electrical House (or an E-House, or E-Room) houses power assemblies. Individual E-Houses can be purpose-built to meet specific requirements, like power back-up systems, switch gears, or transformers.
Just like it sounds, a Generator Enclosure provides security and protection from the elements for a generator. They are designed to provide airflow into the enclosure and ventilation out, keeping the generator performing optimally.
A Substation Module is a module that provides housing for the equipment necessary to change electric energy from one voltage to another (Ex. 480V to 208V). They can also contain switches to connect or disconnect from the power system.
Electrical Skid Houses are similar to electrical houses in that they provide housing for power assemblies. However, the electrical skid house is built on a skid base that allows for quick and easy installation to a remote location.
An Integrated Power Room provides housing for transformer units, control switch gears, and external interfaces. They are constructed to integrate into an already existing system, allowing installation to be quick and efficient.
A Control House is a building used to house control equipment in a central location to operate equipment and/or processes. These types of buildings can be expanded to accommodate people if it is necessary for the control equipment to be monitored and manned.
A Motor Control Center Building (MCC Building / Module) houses equipment to control multiple electrical motors in a central location. They are typically used in large commercial or industrial applications where many electrical motors are in use. The centralized location provides quicker and easier access to controlling the motors. In more extreme or remote environments, MCCs can be constructed to included HVAC, fire suppression systems, and meet the certifications and standards required by regulators.
A Power Control Center (PCC) is constructed to house electrical distribution equipment. They are designed to protect critical electrical and control equipment in a controlled environment, and help to extend the equipment’s life span.
Modular Data Centers, or MDCs, are housing for servers along with the other electrical equipment (IT racks, HVAC, switchgear, etc.) necessary to run them. They can be used to get a site up and running quickly or as an expansion to an existing data center.
A Remote Instrument Enclosures (RIE) houses and protects instruments, analyzers, and drivers from the harsh conditions of the worksite. Because they meet strict blast and fire ratings, their use ensures that critical equipment and personnel are safe.
Remote Instrument Buildings (RIB) are similar to RIE. These are buildings used to house and protect instruments, analyzers, and drivers from the harsh conditions of the worksite.
A Local Equipment Room (LER) will provide storage and workspace for mechanical or electrical equipment. They are often utilized in offshore locations and thus built to meet the maritime certifications and standards required to do so.
A Renewable Energy Enclosure is designed to house and protect electrical equipment used to collect renewable energy from harsh conditions like those of offshore wind farms.
A Solar Battery Enclosure houses the batteries and support equipment necessary to store the electricity from renewable sources.
There are numerous types of technical buildings in use today across a wide range of industries. Each of these buildings can be customized to meet client-specific requirements. These requirements can include details like the size of the building, incoming electrical power, or HVAC specifications.
Specialist Services RedGuard has constructed technical buildings that protect both life and assets from the harshest environments deployed around the globe. If you have any questions about technical buildings, please contact us here. Our team of experts is ready to help.
Specialist Services RedGuard can provide all the technical buildings listed above, as well as customized buildings constructed to your specific requirements. Request a quote and get your next project underway.