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Charles Sturt University to be Supplied with Cogeneration Plant

Charles Sturt University Cogeneration PlantClarke Energy has been awarded the contract to design and construct a turnkey cogeneration plant at Charles Sturt University (CSU) in Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia.

  • University to achieve 25% reduction in energy consumption through self-generation of electricity and heat
  • Clarke Energy to engineer, install and maintain cogeneration plant utilising one of GE Power & Water’s Jenbacher gas engines

Charles Sturt University (CSU) is based in regional Australia and the largest provider of distance education in the country. As part of CSU’s suite of sustainability commitments, the University plan to achieve a 25% reduction in normalised energy consumption and be carbon neutral by 2015.

Consulting Engineers, Sinclair Knight Merz (SKM), provided the feasibility study and specification for implementation of a cogeneration plant at CSU in Bathurst. Clarke Energy were awarded the contract to supply and install a high efficiency cogeneration plant for CSU, which will reduce the energy imported from the grid while offsetting heat loads from existing dedicated boilers.

The cogeneration plant will be driven by one of GE Power & Water’s Jenbacher J312 containerised gas engine producing up to 637kWe of electrical output and achieves a total efficiency of close to 80%. In addition, 705kWt of recovered thermal energy will be delivered to the existing campus hot water network as hot water at 95°C. This will supplement of CSU’s existing gas fired boilers and reduce the overall energy consumption for the campus.

GE’s Jenbacher gas engine will be packaged in a pre-engineered ‘plug-and-play’ containerised cogeneration module which includes all of the required ancillary components. This factory tested and pre-commissioned package is a cost effective solution minimizes the time required for onsite assembly and commissioning.

Power will be generated at 415V then stepped up to 11kV via a new transformer kiosk. This will be connected to the existing campus 11kV ring main network. Gas engine heat will be recovered via a series of engine mounted heat exchangers. An exhaust gas heat exchanger will capture additional heat from the exhaust gas. A purpose-built heat recovery skid adjacent to the engine enclosure will include water pumps, instrumentation, and a common interface point to existing plant services.

The cogeneration plant will be installed within an existing boiler house which previously housed two coal fired boilers. Clarke Energy will integrate the new plant with existing services including fuel gas supply and hot water reticulation.

CSU Green Manager Ed Maher, stated:

Charles Sturt University Cogen Plant Awarding the contract for the delivery of a cogeneration solution at the University in Bathurst to Clarke Energy represents an exciting step in a multi-faceted strategy for achieving carbon neutrality by 2015. The cogen facility is forecast to achieve a 7% reduction to the University’s carbon footprint while also offering operational cost savings by offering a cheaper source of electricity and hot water to conventional grid and central boiler-sourced supplies”.

Managing Director/Main Board Director of Clarke Energy Greg Columbus, commented:

“Charles Sturt University has taken a proactive approach to increase the efficiency of their energy consumption through a number of green initiatives. Clarke Energy is pleased to assist the University to reach their sustainability targets through the installation of GE’s Jenbacher cogeneration plant at Bathurst. Clarke Energy look forward to supporting CSU with a balanced maintenance plan that delivers the plant reliability and availability required over the long term of the asset life”