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EPI Engineering has been named a 2013 IETC Energy Award Winner

EPI Engineering, a Houston-based engineering firm specializing in energy and water optimization studies, has been named a 2013 Industrial Energy Technology Conference (IETC) Energy Award Winner for the impressive energy and water savings that resulted from an EPI plant-wide optimization study of the TPC Group Houston North Operations facility. 

In 2010-2011, TPC Group Houston Operations was evaluating the opportunity for production expansion and needed to assess the capacity of existing utility systems including steam, condensate, compressed air, nitrogen, natural gas, fuel gas, cooling water, and firewater systems. These systems had not been evaluated in detail since their original design in the early 1940’s. Detailed simulation flow models of each utility system were developed and tuned to match existing plant data in order to identify available capacity of each system and understand current limitations. In addition, a detailed steam balance was developed to fully understand steam production and demand needs.

This approach is unique in several ways. Simulation models of large, plant-wide utility systems are typically not developed until the detailed design phase of projects while estimated approaches are commonly done in Front End Loading stages of a project evaluation. Also, optimization of existing utility systems is not routinely done in combination with capital expansion projects. However, TPC senior management, based on past positive experience in this area, decided to model and optimize their utility systems in detail to evaluate the impact of the plant expansion which was the key reason these savings were realized. EPI Engineering was selected for the flow simulation study since they had proven expertise in this area and were also a business partner with EPCON Software, the company who developed the flow simulation software of choice.

The majority of the savings were a result of optimizing the current utility systems before evaluating how to expand them to meet the requirements of the new capital projects.The savings realized positively impacted both current operations and the funding approval of the plant expansion capital project which is now moving forward. The savings that resulted from the study includes:

  • Quantified annualized steam savings opportunities within current operations of >$5MM or 2.2MM MMBtu which provided justification for repair
  • Identified annual cooling water pump energy savings of $480M or 16,000 MWhrs obtainable without any maintenance or capital spend
  • Developed the additional information needed for more accurate scoping of utility systems to serve the proposed process expansion, resulting in capital cost avoidance of $10MM for a new cooling tower
  • Reduced water usage from fixing the steam and condensate leaks resulting in the identification of a low cost process design to provide clarified water for cooling water makeup versus raw river water
  • Total water savings of approx. 300 MM gal/yr can be realized

It is also important to note that in Texas, as in many parts of the country, water supplies are under stress and water availability can become a limiting factor in production expansions. The utility modeling resulted in a reduced future demand for both energy and water for the process cooling system at the plant, compared to the planned cooling water system which was sized to meet the process expansion.

Click here to view the 2013 IETC Program Guide  

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EPI Engineering named 5th fastest-growing, privately-owned business in Houston by the Houston Business Jounral

The Houston Business Journal names EPI Engineering the 5th fastest growing, privately-held company in the Houston area for the period of 2010-2012. EPI Engineering was also the highest-ranked engineering firm appearing on the list and was also nominated for the Enterprise Champions Award.

According to the Houston Business Journal:

The Houston Business Journal on Friday revealed its 2012 list of the 100 fastest-growing private companies in the Houston area at a luncheon at the Hilton Houston Post Oak.

Of the 100 companies, five were deemed by an outside judging panel as Enterprise Champions. Enterprise Champions demonstrate outstanding innovation, corporate culture and community service, in addition to thriving in growth.

The Houston Fast 100 is ranked by two-year growth. All of the companies on the list are headquartered within the 10-county Houston metropolitan area, earned at least $1 million in revenue in 2011 and have been doing business for a minimum of five years.

The No. 1 company on the list — Potentia Energy LLC — had a 19,918 percent increase in revenue from 2009 to 2011. HBJ Reporter Deon Daugherty spent a day with the CEO, Anis Charania, to learn about his company's success. Click here to see how the CEO of a retail electric provider with $22.2 million in revenue in 2011 spends his day.

The 10 highest-ranking companies are listed below. The full list appears exclusively in the Sept. 7 print and digital edition of HBJ.

HBJ's 2012 Fast 100 Top 10

  1. Potentia Energy LLC
  2. Gold & Silver Buyers
  3. General Structural Development
  4. Lime Instruments LLC
  5. EPI Engineering Inc.
  6. US LED Ltd.
  7. Pita Pal
  8. Burleson LLP
  9. Sadler Law Firm LLP
  10. Alternative Power Solutions Corp.


On Sept. 5, more than 100 guests attended HBJ's Fast 100 VIP event, where Amy's Ice Creams CEO Amy Simmons spoke about the struggles and rewards of entrepreneurship.

Click here to read the entire HBJ Article Online

EPI co-sponsoring 6th annual charity golf event

EPI is co-sponsoring the Sixth Annual Charity Golf Tournament on October 14, 2011 at the Kingwood Country Club. Last year's tournament was an overwhelming success, and through the generous support of the golfers and sponsors, the tournament raised nearly $65,000 for charity. This year the tournament will be supporting four great non-profit organizations: The Cossaboom Family YMCA, The Eddie V. Gray Wetlands Education and Recreation Center, The Estelle and Allen Fetters Center, and The Julie Roger Gift of Life.

EPI increases clients refinery production by 2M annually - 40:1 ROI

EPI Engineering significantly increases FCCU production at a Refinery in Texas through a detailed Cooling Water Hydraulic Modeling and Optimization Service. New exchangers were analyzed on a detailed system-wide level and FCCU production was significantly increased by at least 2 million per year with the possibility of over 10 million in increased production. Our client realized a 40:1 ROI with this project.

EPI identifies $8M annual energy savings for a petrochemical plant

EPI Engineering achieved an $8 million annual energy savings for a local petrochemical plant after EPI conducted a plant-wide, utility hydraulic modeling and optimization service. The majority of the savings were identified in the steam and cooling water systems. Steam leaks and unrecovered condensate were the contributing factors to the steam savings. The cooling water systems were being over pressurized by running too many pumps to overcompensate for heat exchanger plugging.

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