Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, USA, July 31st, 2019 – Bridgestone Associates, Ltd (www.brdgstn.com) today announced the completion of a two-year detailed study into the development, financing, and construction of a resilient microgrid in the downtown area of the City of Binghamton. This microgrid will serve seven key facilities that provide essential services (e.g. police, fire, ambulance, emergency management) and facilities of refuge in the event a loss of utility grid power during a natural disaster or similar occurrence.
The microgrid study team of Bridgestone Associates, GE Consulting and Keystone Engineers & Architects conducted a comprehensive evaluation of all aspects of the potential microgrid and prepared a detailed plan for its design, financing, implementation and operation. Bridgestone Associates took the technical lead in evaluating and modeling the energy requirements of the seven facilities and in designing a power supply solution. Bridgestone Associates also conducted ASHRAE Level II audits of each facility and provided recommendations on energy efficiency conservation measures and resiliency hardening.
The microgrid design selected included a natural gas fired 1,000 kW microturbine based Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant with a 250 RT absorption chiller, a 400 kW natural gas engine generator, a 1,200 kW hydro plant, and 600 kW of solar photovoltaic generation. The new CHP plant, to be constructed on a raised area near City Hall will provide hot water for domestic hot water and heating use in the nearby Binghamton Housing Authority, and the Broome County YMCA, and hot water and chilled water for heating and cooling in City Hall. It will also provide power to a new 12.47 kV underground microgrid that will connect all seven buildings and be able to provide 100% of the power requirements even when isolated from the utility grid. Under normal operations the hydro and solar p.v. generating plants will export renewable power to the grid for use by other City of Binghamton facilities. During an emergency, when the microgrid is isolated from the utility grid, the hydro plant will be able to provide power to the microgrid to supplement the CHP plant’s output.
The study was performed under the requirements of the New York Prize Stage 2 Microgrid Project for the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). This $1.25 million project was funded by $1 million grant from NYSERDA and by “in kind” contributions from each of the project team members. The final report prepared by the study team was submitted to NYSERDA in July 2019 and the comprehensive project development and financing plan is currently under review.
“This has been an immensely interesting and timely project for Bridgestone Associates” said Martin Anderson, President of Bridgestone Associates, Ltd. “We have been proud to work with a strong team of specialists to help design and implement a resilient microgrid that can support emergency and essential services in the event of a natural disaster in the City of Binghamton. Downtown Binghamton has suffered a number of major floods in recent years which have cut off essential services like fire, police and ambulance, and stranded hundreds of residents in flooded buildings with no power or heat. The proposed microgrid will allow these services to operate and the residents to remain safely in their apartments during an interruption of the electrical grid” continued Mr. Anderson. “The planned design will incorporate solar, hydro and natural gas fired generation, and be resilient in the event of a total utility grid failure. Microgrids, especially those that are resilient to outside grid interruptions and that include sustainable energy resources, are increasingly important in the US and around the world.”
About Bridgestone Associates, Ltd.
Bridgestone Associates, Ltd. is a 27 year old Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, USA based energy consulting and development company focused on the evaluation, development, financing, design, construction and operations of Renewable, Combined Heat and Power (CHP) and Independent Power (IPP) energy production facilities, and on the efficient use and utilization of energy. The Company provides these services to developers and owners of power generating and other energy related projects worldwide, as well as commercial and industrial energy users.
About the City of Binghamton, New York
Binghamton is located in Broome County in the Southern Tier region of New York State. The City lies in a bowl shaped area at the confluence of the Susquehanna and Chenango Rivers. The City is home to approximately 50,000 residents and is the center of the Binghamton metropolitan area with over a quarter of a million residents.
In the recent past the City has suffered from two major floods including one in 2006 and one in 2011 from Tropical Storm Lee that resulted in over $1 billion in damage. These floods severely impacted the ability of the City to provide emergency services to its residents and required evaluation of hundreds of residents from affected buildings in the downtown area.