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Refrigeration Control Engineer - Level 3

Company: Columbia University
Location: New York
Posted on: July 9, 2024

Job Description:

  • Job Type: Support Staff - Union
  • Bargaining Unit: TWU - B&G
  • Regular/Temporary: Regular
  • End Date if Temporary:
  • Hours Per Week: 40
  • Standard Work Schedule: Monday- Friday, 7:00AM- 3:30PM
  • Building: Manhattanville Campus
  • Salary Range: $54.19 - $54.19

    The salary of the finalist selected for this role will be set based on a variety of factors, including but not limited to departmental budgets, qualifications, experience, education, licenses, specialty, and training. The above hiring range represents the University's good faith and reasonable estimate of the range of possible compensation at the time of posting.

    Position Summary
    A Refrigeration Control Engineer (RCE) is a position in the facilities department providing high quality and effective work that will lead, perform and/or assist in any routine or emergency operations and functions of the District Energy System (DES) and the Distributed Systems throughout the Columbia University-Manhattanville Campus (CUMVC). Perform daily functions as required for the most effective and efficient operation of campus system, chillers, water treatment, air conditioning, ventilation systems and associated auxiliary equipment and controls, including curtailment activities as required by Consolidated Edison (ConEd) or other regulating authorities. Independently or under limited/minimal supervision and/or direction; operate, inspect/round, maintain, troubleshoot/diagnosis, and repair equipment, systems, and machinery in good workmanlike manner, while maintaining a high level of safety, reliability, efficiency, and cost effectiveness. May work in conjunction with the Plant Operations Engineer (POE) or the DES Engineer to insure proper rounds and log entries are recorded, or operate in the Engineer's absence.


  • The RCE will perform daily refrigeration & controls engineering assignments required by maintenance and/or job orders, by sketch, blueprint illustration, and supervisor's oral directions in operations.
  • Maintain, repair and operate system controls and refrigeration equipment, auxiliary systems and computer monitoring systems while working independently or under limited supervision and direction and in accordance with sound engineering practices.
  • Conduct start up, shutdown, and stabilization as necessary to maintain units in efficient service.
  • Conduct regular inspections of MERs, chiller system, and auxiliary equipment to ensure proper operation and maintenance.
  • Sampling of all campus water loops and maintain/adjust proper chemical levels within design limits.
  • Monitor, document, and control refrigerant on campus to comply with USEPA, NYSDEC and NYCDEP standards and permits.
  • Understand fundamentals of electrical motors, controls, switches, fusing and wiring, including basic electrical controls troubleshooting.
  • Operate electric chillers, steam turbine chillers, condensate pumps, air compressors, booster pumps, auto steam reducing stations, plate and frame HX, shell and tube HX, DDC and pneumatic control systems.
  • Operate, service, and maintain associated equipment such as air compressors, scroll compressors, softeners, polishers, air conditioning and ventilating equipment; direct the servicing of chillers, water pumps, vacuum and oil pumps, valves and other associated equipment.
  • Enter and review log book entries for chillers and operating records, indicator, meter, gauge, use and other instrument readings as required for log entries and for monitoring system performances.
  • Make daily operating decisions and takes appropriate action in emergencies.
  • Perform preventive and proactive maintenance on equipment and systems, such as seasonal maintenance of chillers and towers, tube cleaning and flushing on chillers, various types of heat exchangers and all auxiliary equipment.
  • Inspect, maintain, and service all types of refrigerant systems and equipment including MRI chillers and associated secondary systems (i.e. Chilled beams).
  • Follow and perform chiller system operations and equipment rounds in accordance with good engineering practices.
  • Remain current on all changes in operating procedures, new equipment, and related systems.
  • Perform (assist with) troubleshooting and initial root cause analysis on equipment failures and operational upsets and recommend proper corrective actions.
  • Assist and/or direct mechanics and technicians as required to troubleshoot issues, and properly repair, maintain, test, or inspect equipment and/or systems.
  • Diagnose operational problems, control, and equipment malfunctions, and initiate corrective action. Notify supervisor for major repairs, or events.
  • Conduct job-site inspections to determine compliance to standards and codes.
  • Respond to various calls throughout the CUMVC relating to HVAC, refrigeration, and other related maintenance issues.
  • Work alongside and assist other personnel, including licensed personnel, in completing assigned maintenance and service of controls and refrigeration systems and their associated equipment.
  • Provide guidance, direction, and on the job training to all junior personnel in the proper procedures of operations, repair, and maintenance.
  • Assist the POE and the DES Engineer in the operation and performance of the chilled water system of the District Energy System and all Auxiliary Equipment. Assume watch as needed.
  • Monitor and respond to the building management system (BMS) and supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) as needed or directed.
  • Fully utilize the BMS to operate and maintain systems efficiently and effectively; may include adjusting PID control loops, setpoints, and schedules.
  • Use, install, and inspect fire stopping materials.
  • Requisitioning of parts and supplies as necessary to maintain equipment and systems.
  • Process hot work permits and perform necessary fire watch procedures and inspections.
  • Process paperwork including but not limited to work orders, inventory, and preventive maintenance forms.
  • Perform work tasks, report deficiencies, and maintain and complete daily records of labor and materials used during work tasks via the CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management System).
  • Maintain completeness, timeliness, and accuracy of the work and work orders.
  • Continually and urgently communicate with supervisor regarding any apparent operational deficiencies or system malfunctions.
  • Work with other disciplines and management to proactively solve complex, multi-discipline problems.
  • Must perform any duties assigned in an emergency as determined by management.
  • Attend and participate in all departmental trainings and meetings.
  • Attend and complete relevant on-the-job training as required.
  • Ability to perform all tasks and duties related to the Refrigeration Control Engineer Level 2 position if required.
  • Perform other related duties incidental to the work herein.

    Minimum Qualifications

    • HS diploma or GED
    • Must demonstrate minimum professional proficiency in the English Language; as defined by the U.S. Department of State.
    • NYC Refrigeration Engineer's License in reference to Columbia University, District Energy System address.
    • Three (3) years internal experience as a Refrigeration Control Engineer - Level 2; or external equivalent of seven (7) years of experience as a HVAC&R mechanic.
    • Six (6) years of experience operating a chiller plant under active license and certifications.
    • Knowledge of various types of chillers, HVAC&R controls, and operating knowledge.
    • Two (2) years of experience with automated systems controls; open loop and closed loop controls systems. (Siemens, Johnson Controls, Honeywell, etc.)
    • Must be a quick learner and exhibit self-motivational skills.
    • Adequate ability to discern colors for monitoring alarm conditions.
    • Strong team mentality (ability to work with others).
    • Well-refined interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate with all levels of staff, customers, clients, students, vendors, and management.
    • How to read and interpret SDS information.
    • Understanding of general vivarium, and laboratory rules and restrictions.
    • How to identify a fire rated barrier and properly install fire-stopping materials.
    • Must be able to work all shifts as assigned.
    • Advanced knowledge of how to operate, navigate, manipulate, and interpret building management systems (BMS).
    • Basic knowledge of microprocessor controls; e.g. OPTIVEIW.
    • Advanced knowledge and understanding of Siemens Operating Systems (e.g. Desigo) and other controls systems that may be installed as the campus construction continues.
    • Demonstrates an understanding of the fundamentals of electrical motors, controls, switches, fusing and wiring, and circuit breaker coordination.
    • How to properly utilize lock out-tag out procedures for all energy sources (electrical, thermal, hydraulic, hydronic)
    • How to properly and safely operate all hand tools, power tools, and equipment utilized by facilities maintenance and repair including specialty HVAC, automated controls, and chiller maintenance equipment.
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Fire Guard (F-60)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Using Powder Activated Tools (E-21)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Torch Operations (G-60)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness To Operate and Maintain Air Compressors (A-35)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for City Wide Sprinkler Systems (S-12)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for City Wide Standpipe Systems (S-13)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Standpipe for Multi-Zone Systems (S-14)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Supervision of Bulk Oil Plants (P-12)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Supervise Fuel-Oil Piping and Storage in Buildings (P-98)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Handling, Use, and Storage of Flammable Compressed Gases (G-98)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Fitness for Storage, Handling and Use of Hazardous Materials (C-91)
    • Hold and maintain Certificate of Qualification for Refrigeration Operating Engineer (Q-01/Q-99/Z-51)
    • Responsible for obtaining and maintaining other applicable NYC Certificates of Fitness as required by the FDNY and/or other authorities having jurisdiction.
    • Hold and maintain PBS (Petroleum Bulk Storage) Class B Operator
    • Hold and maintain EPA 608 Universal Technician Certification
    • Hold and maintain a NATE Senior Specialty certification, and the Commercial Refrigeration Service certification or equivalent certification accepted by CUMVC Management
    • NICET Certification in Inspection and Testing of Water-Based Systems - Level III
    • Responsible for obtaining and maintaining other applicable Certifications as determined by management as the facility develops. This may include additional NICET Certifications, PBS Certifications, etc.
    • Must be capable of performing fire brigade duties as assigned.
    • Hold and maintain OSHA 10 Certification
    • Knowledge of and/or Training on the following:

      • General OSHA standards and requirements.
      • Use of portable fire extinguisher.
      • Hazardous waste awareness.
      • Asbestos hazards and safety.
      • Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (work order management system)
      • Confined space entry procedures.
      • Lock-out/Tag-out procedures.
      • Description and use of fire stopping materials.
      • Communication etiquette including phone, radio, and customer service.
      • Hot work permits.
      • Must demonstrate knowledge of all CUMVC's safety policies and procedures.

        • Must demonstrate applicable institutional knowledge and practices of the facility and its operations.
        • Duties and requirements from Refrigeration Control Engineer Level 2 and prior still apply and must be maintained and current, as well as the knowledge applied to any future buildings coming on line.

          Physical Requirement & Environmental Conditions
          The physical and environmental demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential responsibilities and functions of the job and are not meant to be all-inclusive.

          • Use strength to lift and transport items needed to perform the functions of the job, with the ability to lift 50 pounds independently and support team lift with reasonable accommodations.
          • Sit, stand, bend, kneel, crouch, and squat for prolonged periods of time and/or repeatedly over a required period of time.
          • Reach with and work with hands and arms overhead.
          • May work in an environment where a variety of pathogens, chemical substances, and gases are used for research.
          • Ability to work while wearing a full-face respirator.
          • Required to be Tuberculosis (TB) negative, submit to periodic TB testing, and a chest x-ray if a positive TB test is read.
          • Able to perform work in power plant and campus environments.

            Employee will be required to practice the use of proper PPE when exposed to the conditions above including participating in pulmonary testing for the ability to wear respirators.

            Preferred Qualifications

            • Hold and maintain an active Motor Vehicle Class D License.

              Equal Opportunity Employer / Disability / Veteran
              Columbia University is committed to the hiring of qualified local residents.

Keywords: Columbia University, New York , Refrigeration Control Engineer - Level 3, Professions , New York, New York

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