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Thermal Heater Replacement Case Study

Replacing an engineered wood and trim manufacturer's thermal oil heater with a new Geka heater required an exact understanding of the existing facility. LSC was the exclusive facilities mechanical and structural design firm. The project started with a 3D laser scanning and modeling to ensure everything could be designed and constructed to plan.  


Upgrading to a new heater included a 3D laser scan of the existing large diameter piping system, pipe racks, and pump room. The existing and new piping and structural platform were modeled with CADWorx and Revit. Piping calculations and stress analysis of the existing and new platform were done to ensure the design met the vendor specifications. A final as-built scan and model update provided the client with accurate documentation for future upgrades and expansions.  
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Structural Engineering
  • Construction Drawing
  • 3D Laser Scanning
  • 3D CAD Modeling
  • Procurement Support
  • Demolition and Construction Drawings
  • As-Built Drawings


The project included system layout, analysis, and development of a design for a Geka heater replacement. Additional scopes included development of an in-kind replacement of the inner coils of the Geka. The initial site work was critical to this project. Engineers spent time onsite working with the mill personnel to gather pertinent information needed for design and engineering. 


With very little available downtime, the prework the team did to ensure success at the site paid dividends. Existing and proposed platform expansion was modeled in Revit to lay out the access platform, pipe supports, HVAC, and existing utilities to reduce the probability of construction conflicts. The equipment placement and connection proceeded as planned. Partnering with a company that is able to provide mechanical and structural expertise meant that there was no delay in critical construction decisions. 


LSC conducted a site visit to 3D scan the facility. LSC then modeled the existing layout and compared it to historical construction documentation. Pipe stress analysis was performed on the new piping using AutoPipe software to ensure there will be no issues with the piping or pipe supports used. RISA3D was used for structural analysis of existing structures to verify the platform modifications. LSC delivered final as-built, prints, and model updates.