Scot M. Duncan, PE

President and Founder, Conservant Systems, Retrofit Originality Incorporated, Position: Relative Humidity Control/Thermal Energy Storage/Energy Efficiency Subject Matter Expert

Mr. Duncan brings over 40 years of Award winning experience in controls, instrumentation, mechanical system synthesis, design, commissioning and troubleshooting of new and existing central plant, Thermal Energy Storage, Mechanical and Control Systems to our clients.

Mr. Duncan is the inventor of the High Efficiency Dehumidification System (HEDS), which is currently delivering over 57% energy savings related to RH control at the Fort Bragg, NC and Tinker AFB, OK Department of Defense test sites.

HEDS was a winner of the 2014 Department of Defense "ESTCP" Global Energy Efficiency Technology Competition.

HEDS recently won the 2016 DOE/FEMP nationwide "Call for Innovation" Energy Efficiency Technology Competition.

Mr. Duncan is a “Subject Matter Expert” for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, on the following topics:

  1. Relative humidity control in humid climates.
  2. High efficiency dehumidification/reheat systems.
  3. HVAC system design and optimization.
  4. High efficiency chiller plant design and optimization.
  5. “Variable Speed Everything” chiller plant design.
  6. High efficiency DOAS systems.
  7. HVAC and chiller plant design and optimization training.
  8. DDC controls and optimization.
  9. Load Based Optimization System for HVAC resets.
  10. Water conservation via proper HVAC system design, operation and controls.
  11. Heat recovery systems.
  12. Thermal Energy Storage (TES) system design and optimization.
  13. Net Zero Energy Buildings – HVAC systems design strategies.
  14. Net Zero Energy Buildings – HVAC systems training.

Mr. Duncan is a co-author of the International Energy Agency (IEA) ECBCS Annex 46 “Energy and Process Assessment Protocol” and has provided over 100 chiller plant, HVAC and TES energy efficiency and design strategy training seminars since 1985. Additionally, he has trained over 500 people brought in from around the world for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

He has a specialized background in the synthesis, design and analysis of ASHRAE Award winning energy efficient central plant based HVAC systems. He is an expert in the analysis, design and testing of Award Winning High Efficiency Thermal Energy Storage Systems.

He is one of three Southern California Edison “Permanent Load Shift” (Thermal Energy Storage) approved vendors. The PLS (TES) Pilot Program projects designed by Mr. Duncan delivered demand reductions in excess of 3 MW at an average chiller plant energy efficiency improvement of over 30%.

His project experience includes planning, design and/or retrofits for over 80 thermal energy storage systems, many of which are listed at his company’s web site: His responsibilities include criteria development, design, testing, tuning, commissioning and M&V for central plants, thermal energy storage, energy management and digital control systems for numerous commercial, industrial, health care and institutional projects.

Mr. Duncan’s thermal energy storage experience includes over 500,000 ton hours of installed systems, including several Central Utility Plant TES based space cooling and aircraft cooling systems (PCA) including DFW, SFO, LAX and Sky Harbor airports.

Thermal Energy Storage projects for Southern California Edison developed as a part of their pilot “Permanent Load Shift” program have averaged over a 30% energy efficiency improvement, in addition to complete on-peak to off-peak cooling load shifts.

The recently completed Large Temperature Differential (LTD)-based TES project for the Pacific Gas and Electric San Ramon Valley Conference Center has resulted in a cooling plant energy reduction of over 50% compared to the previous TES system in place at the facility. This efficiency gain would have been greater, but the system needs to store 32°F chilled water to meet the cooling loads on peak days, so the charge cycle efficiency is a little lower on peak load days. Total chiller plant efficiency has averaged less than 0.50 kWh per ton-hour when delivering 35°F chilled water to the TES tank.

A chiller plant upgrade project designed by Mr. Duncan at the Navy Base Point Loma site has resulted in documented monthly energy savings exceeding 60% over the past 7 years at this 1,150 ton plant, equipped with a separate utility meter. Cooling loads have actually increased at the site, and savings have remained above 60%.

Mr. Duncan is a “hands-on” engineer, rather than a desk engineer, and started in this profession as a control system field technician at the age of 15 for the dominant global control system manufacturer of the time. He worked his way up thru the ranks dealing with problems created by design engineers that did not spend field time in facilities to really understand how they work, and what it takes to make them work properly.

Military/Government related work includes

  • Fort Bragg, NC – High Efficiency Dehumidification System (HEDS) ESTCP test project showing 40% to 60% cooling load reductions and 100% reheat energy reductions for RH control.
  • Tinker AFB, OK, HEDS ESTCP test project showing 35% to 60% cooling load reductions and 100% reheat energy reductions for RH control.
  • Balboa Naval Medical Center - Evaluation, design and commissioning of energy efficiency upgrade projects for this 1,800,000 SF Navy medical center in San Diego.
  • Camp Pendleton Naval Hospital – Evaluation, design and commissioning of a new boiler plant, new chiller plant and new air handling units in a fully occupied 600 bed military hospital.
  • Guest speaker on controls, cooling system energy efficiency and high efficiency dehumidification systems at the US DOE/COE Technology Workshops in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2016 providing training to an international group of Engineers and operators.
  • Submarine Base, San Diego – Evaluation, design and commissioning of energy efficiency upgrade projects for the Navy, thru San Diego Gas and Electric.
  • Third Fleet Command, San Diego - Evaluation, design and commissioning of chiller plant and controls system optimization upgrade projects at this site. Savings have averaged over 60% per year for the past 7 years, with a separate utility meter on the plant proving out these savings, while serving an increased cooling load.
  • Fort Huachuca, AZ, Fort Shafter, HI, Schofield Barracks, HI, Fort Sill OK, Yuma Proving Grounds, Fort Jackson, SC, Fort Irwin, CA, Fort Leonard Wood, MO – Evaluation of energy efficiency and cost reduction projects related to chiller plants, DDC controls upgrades, cooling system optimization and High Efficiency Dehumidification Systems.
  • Energy Efficiency and Thermal Energy Storage projects have been completed on approximately 95 facilities for the State of California, The County of Orange, the County of Los Angeles and the County of Fresno.

Other Relevant Experience

TES projects include the SMUD Customer Service Center, as well as several of the largest Thermal Energy Storage systems on the SCE, SDG&E and the LA Department of Water and Power electrical grids.

Sacramento Municipal Utility District Customer Service Center Central Plant/TES System. This project, designed while Mr. David Freeman was running SMUD, is still the most energy efficient TES system in SMUD Territory. It has won numerous awards and is still used as an energy efficiency showcase, more than 15 years after its construction.

Permanent Load Shift (PLS) Program Southern California Edison (TES). We were selected as the design and construction team of choice for the chilled water storage portion of the SCE PLS program. Once the TES projects were fully commissioned and in operation, these projects averaged over a 30% reduction in chiller plant system energy consumption, while serving increased cooling loads at the same time. Total demand reduction for the projects exceeds 3 MW.

LAX, SDIA and DFW Airport Central Utility Plant/TES system peer review services. Much of our TES experience has come from repairing the mistakes made by other Engineering firms. Some teams choose to be more proactive and retain us during the initial stages of the project to ensure that they will not design something that needs to be repaired soon after construction.

For the DFW Airport chiller plant/TES system we performed a chilled water plant peer review for the 35,000 ton chiller plant and 12,000 ton low temp PCA plant at the request of American Airlines that significantly changed the design of the chiller plant for the better. For the LAX and San Diego airport projects, we provided piping and equipment re-design and re-selection recommendations.

University of Southern California Central Plants and TES system. Design of the Mechanical and controls systems and system commissioning for several chiller plants and the 3 MG chilled water storage TES system at USC. When we started work at USC in 1992, the campus chilled water temperature differential was 8°F to 9°F.

We developed a strategy to increase the chilled water system TD, which now stands between 25°F and 27°F on peak summer days. These systems have cut energy consumption by nearly 48% compared to the prior systems in place, and incorporate most of the design strategies requested by the DWP DISCO project team.

Other TES projects include:

  • L.A. DWP Computer Operations Facility
  • Koll Center Irvine North I
  • Koll Center Irvine North II
  • Koll Center Newport
  • Mira Loma Boys Camp
  • Pitchess Honor Rancho
  • Princess Alicante Hotel
  • Jamboree Center I
  • Jamboree Center II
  • Center Tower
  • Auto. Club of S.C. Data Center
  • Lockheed Palmdale Plant 10
  • Beverly Hills Civic Center
  • Sacramento Municipal Utility District
  • Washington State University
  • Central Washington University
  • California State University, Bakersfield
  • California State University, Los Angeles
  • University of California, San Diego
  • 400 and 600 Corporate Point, Los Angeles
  • University of California, Irvine
  • Riverside City Hall
  • Saddleback Church
  • PG&E San Ramon Valley Conference Center
  • Von Karman Towers
  • Irvine Towers
  • 1920 and 2010 Main Street, Irvine
  • DFW Airport CUP
  • San Diego Int’l Airport CUP
  • LA Int’l Airport CUP
  • American Airlines - LAX - Aircraft Cooling
  • American Airlines - DFW - Aircraft Cooling
  • SFO Airport - Aircraft Cooling
  • SEA-TAC Airport - Aircraft Cooling
  • America West - Sky Harbor - Aircraft Cooling
  • 801 Tower Building
  • Disney Concert Hall
  • County of L.A., Central Jail Expansion
  • Lynwood Sheriff Station
  • Orange County Performing Arts Center
  • Designs for 4 Schools
  • Sacramento County Courts Building
  • Paramount Studios, Stage 32

Research, training and educational seminars regarding Energy Efficiency and TES provided for the following groups:

  • Riverside Public Utility
  • Southern California Edison
  • Salt River Project, Phoenix AZ
  • Association of Energy Engineers
  • Western Area Power Administration
  • Sacramento Municipal Utility District
  • California Institute for Energy Efficiency
  • United States Army Corps. Of Engineers
  • Lockheed Advanced Development Company
  • Association of Professional Energy Managers
  • Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
  • American Society of Heating Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers

Professional Qualifications

  • L.A. Department of Water and Power Design Assistance Provider, DSM Specialist
  • Registered Mechanical Engineer in the State of California, No. M‑024280
  • President 1990/91 Association of Energy Engineers, Southern California Chapter
  • Vice Executive Director 1991/1992 Association of Energy Engineers, Southern California Chapter

Academic Background

  • California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, CA ‑ BSME, 1984
  • Honeywell, Incorporated Computer Systems Engineering School ‑ 1979