We have the experience and engineering approach federal agencies need to get things done

Salas O’Brien has a dedicated team that serves federal government agencies. We provide project and program-specific solutions in a wide range of engineering and technical services, developing and implementing solutions by drawing on the extensive experience of our professional staff.

We understand the intricate complexities of this sector and the value of strong relationships. Our work includes projects with the EPA, NASA, NIH, USACE, the National Park Service, the Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense, the US Senate and US House of Representatives—to name a few.

Harry KleiserManaging Principal, Salas O’Brien
We are a dynamic team of thought leaders, project managers, engineers, scientists, and analysts who approach every project with a creative mindset, always looking to push the boundaries of what is possible.
Harry KleiserManaging Principal, Salas O’Brien
Edwards Air Force Base
Edwards Air Force Base

Largest renewable energy project in the United States powered by a public-private partnership facilitated by Salas O’Brien

Salas O’Brien’s federal team provided alternative funding consulting and engineering design support for the Edwards Sanborn Solar-Battery Energy Storage project at 412th Test Wing, Edwards Air Force Base in Kern County, California. This project highlights the power of public-private partnerships to build energy and infrastructure assets to support renewable energy development, decarbonization, energy resilience, and enhancement of our domestic energy production.

Salas O’Brien facilitated utilizing a Department of Defense procurement vehicle through an Enhanced Use Lease agreement. The Air Force provided an outgrant of approximately 3,000 acres of underutilized non-excess of Air Force real property assets with the best practices from private development and financing to deliver the largest PV-BESS project at $2.42B – 1,300 MW total capacity Photovoltaic and Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) in the United States.

US Army Corps of Engineers
US Army Corps of Engineers

Performing the mission of nearly 300 laborers in half the time and at roughly one third of the cost

We are working with the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Vicksburg District and Marine Design Center to resolve an operational risk to one of its most important civil works missions – the maintenance of navigational waterways critical to national defense and economic security. For decades, one of USACE’s most hazardous projects has been controlling and mitigating naturally occurring erosion along the banks of the vital Mississippi River. We worked with USACE to evaluate several procurement and funding courses of action to develop a new and innovative erosion control prototype using advanced technologies ranging from robotics to concrete mat production to ship building.

This innovative project prototype, now known as ARMOR ONE, will increase safety, productivity, and sustainability of military, civil and private river operations for decades to come. And its applicability to other navigable waterways facing similar erosion problems is being explored throughout America. When complete, the robot will be the largest in the world and capable of performing the mission of nearly 300 laborers in half the time and at roughly one third of the cost.

National Institutes of Health
National Institutes of Health

Peak system performance through detailed engineering assessments

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) regularly monitors systems to comply with local, state, and federal rules and regulations. Salas O’Brien’s on-site assessments guarantee that the NIH’s sustainability goals, plant operations needs, maintenance requirements, engineering, and Facility Condition Index and Backlog of Maintenance and Repair reporting requirements are met. An example of our work is the extensive assessment of the Central Utility Plant (CUP) and Cogeneration Plant in Bethesda, MD. Electricity, steam, and chilled water for NIH’s central campus facilities derive from the CUP. We suggested improvements for sustainability and long-term system upgrades and associated cost estimates. Through our visits, we checked asset ages, numbers, prices, and operational settings to ensure that reports were accurate. The Cogeneration Plant, owned by the U.S. government, is one of the largest plants globally known for its low nitrogen oxide emission output compared to other commercial turbines.

Salas O’Brien’s work with the NIH helped them achieve:

  • $5M annual utility bill savings
  • 58,000 tons of decreased gas emissions yearly
Cape Canaveral
Cape Canaveral

Engineering for Launch Complex 41 for ULA’s Vulcan rocket

Salas O’Brien designed and constructed new propellant and acoustical suppression water systems, including civil, electrical, communications, fire alarm, fire protection, fixed water spray, storage vessel layout, environmental, and process piping design for United Launch Alliance’s Vulcan vehicle launch site.

Site modifications included a new liquid natural gas cryogenic fuel fill, storage, and distribution system; modifications to existing liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen systems; and modifications to the acoustic suppression water system on an active launch site.

We completed initial engineering trade studies and analyses to determine the storage area configurations and tank placements, providing several options and conceptual layouts based on initial client and stakeholder requirements.

We also performed thermal simulations on cryogenic vacuum jacketed and mechanically insulated vent pipes, designing pipe supports to adhere to allowable stress and displacements caused by thermal contraction. Our detailed 3D model, which incorporated site 3D scans and point clouds, accurately depicted each pipe route and adhered to strict slope requirements, ensuring highly-detailed shop drawings.

In addition, our team provided requests for information and submittal reviews for each system during construction and conducted site visits to resolve possible issues before they arose.

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What we can offer

Salas O’Brien provides a wide variety of engineering and technical services to meet the demands of this high-performance sector.

Advanced technologies and robotics

Salas O’Brien specializes in matching specific technology advancements into full application across our client organizations.

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Architecture and interior design

Our team has decades of experience serving the federal government and Fortune 100 clients from initial design strategy and planning through implementation and management with our expertise in corporate workplace, data centers, critical environments, and telecommunication facilities.

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Asset management

Salas O’Brien helps clients to maintain and optimize their assets, identify opportunities for cost savings, and develop strategies for asset lifecycle management.

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Building science engineering

Salas O’Brien’s team are experts in building materials and systems, and how they perform in real-world conditions. We can help you improve building performance.

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Civil engineering

Salas O’Brien’s civil engineering team delivers integrated design solutions for industrial, commercial, municipal, and power generation clients.

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Decarbonization and sustainability

Salas O’Brien works with clients to identifying critical energy requirements, assess energy vulnerabilities, and develop sustainable solutions to resolve resilience gaps.

Facility condition assessements

Salas O’Brien utilizes a time-tested approach to conduct FCAs for our clients. We formulated our evaluation method in 2000, based on the requirements of NASA, Air Force, and Navy clients. To create the process, we referenced the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) guidelines, particularly the MO-321 (Facilities Management) and MO-322 (Inspection of Shore Facilities) standards, which were the accepted norms for property assessments then. Our assessment method has been refined over the years based on our extensive experience with FCAs and our use of guidance from professional bodies like ASTM International Property Condition Assessment. We expanded our expertise in 2013 to include the BUILDER Sustainment Management System (SMS) developed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Construction Engineering Research Laboratory (CERL).

Mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection

Salas O’Brien’s mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire protection design team delivers common-sense, integrated design solutions that are cost-effective, reliable, and energy efficient.

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Public-private partnerships

Salas O’Brien facilitates access to alternative sources of funding through public and private partnerships.

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Structural engineering

Salas O’Brien’s structural engineering expertise extends from conceptual development and 3D modeling to surveys, investigative studies, and due diligence assessments.

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Building envelope consulting and testing

Salas O’Brien covers all aspects of building envelope consulting, from design collaboration for new construction to installation oversight during construction. On existing buildings, our expertise also includes in-depth forensic analysis to pinpoint envelope failures, then offering detailed repair and remediation guidance.

Our field-testing services use cutting-edge tools to assess air and water tightness, thermal efficiency, and structural soundness. We have an ISO 17025 accredited lab and are capable of conducting a variety of both lab and field testing procedures following FGIA/AAMA, ASTM and other industry standards. Our team also specializes in energy modeling to boost efficiency and hazardous material sampling for safety. Our comprehensive building envelope commissioning ensures optimal performance of your building’s envelope, enhancing the functionality of both new and existing structures.