The sky’s the limit for latest high profile FG Wilson project

The leading manufacturer of diesel and gas generator sets, FG Wilson, has completed one of its 'tallest' orders to date following the installation of life safety and tenants' standby generation sets at Western Europe's tallest building, The Shard which is part of London Bridge Quarter.

The project was delivered by Bells Control Equipment Ltd - an official FG Wilson UK dealer - in partnership with Mace. This latest power installation at the world's first 'vertical city' follows on from high profile commercial project successes including Heron Tower, the Olympic Stadium and Selfridges.

Standing at 309.6 metres (1,016 ft) high, The Shard which officially inaugurated on 5th July this year, has redefined London's skyline and Bells have designed and delivered a complete turnkey solution, on time and within budget.

This turnkey power solution consisted of a number of elements:

Two FG Wilson 4016 TRG2 2000KVA generator sets, complete with heat exchanger units, were installed on basement level three of the building. A key component to the power system was a cooling water system for each unit.


Over 450m of flow/return pipework connect the generators located on basement level three to the remote radiators located on plant roof level 20. Dry air coolers were selected to achieve the required duty and noise level while duplex cooling pumps and pressurisation units ensure a consistent 10 Bar operating pressure.

Each generator was encased within an acoustic close fit canopy complete with acoustic floor and high performance anti-vibration mounts. These measures reduced noise to 70dB (A) at one metre within the plantroom and allowed vibration isolation greater than 98% to be achieved.

Single stage exhaust silencers, measuring in excess of 5000mm, were installed on each of the generator sets. Each silencer achieved a noise level of 70dB at one metre and combined with a 400mm i/d, 600mm o/d flue running from the basement to the termination point on the roof plant, level 20, total an impressive 100m in length.

36,000 litres of bulk fuel storage consisting of six spilt tanks were installed within the main central core of the building - part of a complete fuel supply and transfer system running through the structure from the ground floor. The fuel pipe solution installed represents a first in commercial office use with a flexible pipe in pipe system implemented rather than traditional mild steel welded pipe in pipe. This innovation allowed significant time savings for this stage of the project.

Bells were also responsible for the installation of all control cabling and local controllers. A PLC system was utilised to monitor supply and extract ventilation, the fuel system and cooling water system. The generator sets fully support all parasitic loads while the PLC system ensures that emergency failure or human error will not cause the generator system to fail.

Paul Connolly the MEP project manager for Mace at The Shard comments: "The remit from Mace to Bells and FG Wilson was clear and simple; bring all innovations and best practices to The Shard project to ensure the successful delivery of the turnkey generator package. Bells and FG Wilson's response was to deliver a solution that excelled, leading in design development, sequential programming of key components within their domain, technical submittals of equipment and delivery of the turnkey generator package."

James Murphy, director of Bells Control said: "It is testament to all those involved in the design and construction of the project, and the vision of developer, Irvine Sellar, and his team that this inspirational building has been constructed. This vision was made real by Mace's project management expertise and by their recognition that the generator system should be a single contractor turnkey package."