Case Study

Staples Center

Fuel Cell Study, Design, and Installation for Bloom Energy

Bloom Energy is a provider of breakthrough solid oxide fuel cell technology that generates clean, highly efficient on-site power from multiple sources. Their energy servers are currently producing power for many Fortune 500 companies. When Staples Center, the multipurpose sports and entertainment arena, wanted a clean source of power, they turned to Bloom Energy. The 500 kW fuel cell project they implemented provides approximately 25% of the power the Staples Center requires and has the potential to reduce its carbon emissions by 2.2 million pounds annually, a 39% reduction.

Staples Center, located in downtown Los Angeles, is home to the L.A. Lakers, the L.A. Clippers, and the L.A. Kings, and is host to such illustrious events as the NBA and NHL All-Star Games and the Grammy Awards. It is, to say the least, a prestigious project requiring the highest attention to detail.

Salas O’Brien was hired to provide engineering services for the installation of the fuel cells. These services included a site evaluation and feasibility study, preliminary design, construction documents, power quality metering, bus tap design, sound study, ground fault/arc flash studies, design project management, and mechanical, electrical, and plumbing design for the fuel cell interconnection as well as the water and gas connection. In addition, geotechnical investigation and civil engineering design services were provided. These included partial topographic services, a utility and boundary survey, site and horizontal control, a grading and utility plan, and an erosion control plan.

This was a tremendous project and Salas O’Brien was fully equipped to supply the comprehensive services required, connecting the facility’s infrastructure and existing utilities to these new, forward-minded technologies. In fact, the sustainable impact of this project drew Vice President Al Gore to speak at the opening event. At the unveiling of the fuel cells, he and other leaders flipped the switch, taking us all another step further into a new era of clean energy technology.


Los Angeles, California

Project Size:
950,000 Square Feet

Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, Civil, Geotechnical Engineering

2016 Best Sustainable Project, Gold Award, Los Angeles Business Journal