US Coast Guard upgrades to CHP and solar

Energy system upgrades including a combined heat and power (CHP) plant are expected to save a US Coast Guard academy over $2m per year.

The facility in New London, Connecticut is set to replace its 50-year-old heavy fuel oil-fired central plant with a gas-fired plant and a 1 MW CHP plant, as well as install two rooftop solar PV arrays, expand the central chiller plant and implement 20 additional energy conservation measures.

The project also includes maintenance, repair, and replacement for major equipment including the boiler, the CHP plant and the chiller plant to ensure energy savings are achieved. Utility Eversource Energy and renewables outfit Ameresco are partnering on the project.à‚ à‚ 

The upgrade is expected to reduce the academy’s total energy consumption by 16 per cent per year, while energy costs will be reduced by 80 per cent.

Work on the project began on Monday and is expected to finish in 2020.

The academy said it aims to strengthen its energy resilience by increasing on-site generation through the CHP plant and the rooftop solar arrays, a 284 kW installation and a 170 kW system. Together, these will provide 82 per cent of the campus’s power.

In addition, cadets studying engineering will gain early exposure to a microturbine similar to equipment found on the Coast Guard’s newest national security cutters, the academy said.à‚ 


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