Rolls-Royce will deliver 23 of its MTU Onsite Energy diesel generator sets to supply emergency power to Nunavut, one of the most remote northern territories of the Canadian Arctic.

The gensets form part of a wider project to provide reliable high-speed internet access to Nunavut, in which Rolls-Royce is partnering with Northwestel, a Northern Canadian telecommunications company.

“Projects like this remind us how important connectivity and accessibility are to modern life,” said Brian Ponstein, regional sales engineer at MTU Onsite Energy. “We are very happy to provide the power necessary to ensure this connectivity is always available to this remote region of the world.”

As part of the Canadian government’s Connect to Innovate programme, Northwestel developed a comprehensive plan to upgrade the region’s telecommunications infrastructure that includes the use of satellite technology with associated receiver dishes in each of the 25 Nunavut communities to increase bandwidth capacity.

Each satellite-receiver pair will require backup power to ensure maximum uptime and guarantee service in the event of a power outage.

Nunavut currently has download speeds of 1-3 megabits per second. The goal, by 2019, is to increase those spends three-fold. Longer term, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), the governing body responsible for regulating the broadcasting and telecommunications industries, will require all households in Canada to have download speeds of 50 megabits per second within the next 15 years. 
Northwestel partnered with Wajax, a Canadian provider of industrial products and services, to design two versions of MTU Onsite Energy’s backup power systems. The 19 ‘short’ version units will include only a genset and the four ‘long’ units will include a genset with room for additional radio equipment to accommodate site conditions for each location.

The units also include custom Arctic-grade enclosures to protect against the extreme temperatures – up to 22 degrees Celsius in Northern Nunavut – and meet local sound requirements.

“The custom Arctic-grade enclosures are built with cutting-edge technology to combat the area’s extreme weather conditions and to ensure units will continue running during freezing weather and blizzards,” said Andre Charpentier, director of power generation sales in Eastern Canada at Wajax Power Systems.

Don’t miss the Flexible Generation & On-Site Power Track at POWER-GEN International next week.