American DG Energy to Provide On-Site Energy to Hotel Indigo

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WALTHAM, MASS.—American DG Energy Inc., a leading on-site utility offering electricity, heat, hot water and cooling to hospitality facilities, has entered into a 15-year agreement to supply low-cost energy to the Hotel Indigo Boston–Newton Riverside, a branded boutique hotel located in Newton, Mass.

Under the terms of the agreement, Hotel Indigo will soon receive a substantial portion of its electricity, space heat, swimming pool heat and domestic hot water directly from an on-site cogeneration facility, providing 100 kW and 732,000 btu’s per hour of energy while offsetting up to 328 tons of CO2 gas each year. American DG Energy will own, install and maintain the equipment and sell the energy produced at a rate lower than the local utility. Hotel Indigo will avoid the capital expenditure and pay a lower energy bill each month. The value of the agreement to American DG Energy is expected to be approximately $2.5 million over the program term

“While redesigning our property, we were seeking innovative sustainable technology that
blended with the Hotel Indigo experience,” says Paul Ferreira, managing director of Blue Hawk Investments, co-owner of Hotel Indigo with Normandy Real Estate Partners. “We will now be able to lower our energy costs and provide a true benefit to the environment. American DG Energy provides the capital, technology and operations to make it all happen.”

System Also Provides Backup PowerWith its On-Site Utility energy solution, American DG Energy will produce energy in the form of electricity, space heat, swimming pool heat and domestic hot water and sell it to Hotel Indigo at a price guaranteed to be lower than the local utility. Hotel Indigo will pay for the energy used, but not for any capital or operating costs. The energy will be produced with small-scale, combined heat and power (CHP) equipment, specifically the Tecogen CM-100 cogeneration unit, located at the property site, but owned, installed and operated by American DG Energy. The CM-100 will also provide convenience power for equipment such as computers and boilers when there is a power outage.

American DG Energy’s On-Site Utility energy solution also has significant environmental benefits. The system planned for Hotel Indigo, which is expected to be fully operational during the first quarter of 2008, could offset up to 328 tons of CO2 gas each year; that’s the equivalent of planting 89 acres of trees or eliminating the emissions of 56 cars.

American DG Energy’s operations group will manage all aspects of the installation of the On-Site Utility energy solution and handle all service, maintenance and repair of the system for the duration of the agreement. Hotel Indigo will not need any manpower to support the equipment. In addition, the equipment will reduce the reliance on the boiler plant, which will extend the life of the boiler and reduce its annual operating costs.

Penacook Place / Haverhill, Massachusetts

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BackgroundOriginally established in 1969 as Union Mission Nursing Home, Penacook Place, a 160-bed, not-for-profit nursing and rehabilitation facility located in Haverhill, Massachusetts, offers state-of-the-art care, modern amenities and a wide array of services. But, like many other healthcare facilities largely dependent upon diminishing state and federal funding, Penacook’s resources are limited.

tility costs had been increasing for years and Penacook had continuously looked for innovative ways to lower those costs in order to avoid cutting services. “When I was introduced to American DG Energy, I was open to anything that would help us reduce energy costs,” stated Julian Rich, President & CEO of Penacook Place.

Solution
After consulting with Penacook, American DG Energy initiated a no-cost feasibility study to determine if an On-Site Utility would be a good fit for Penacook’s facility and its energy requirements. The study involved performing a site survey, evaluating the historical energy use patterns, assessing the installation and system modification costs and estimating annual savings.

After careful examination of the data, American DG Energy concluded that with its On-Site Utility energy solution, Penacook Place could realize annual energy cost savings of $6,900. Since Penacook would not pay any equipment purchase or installation costs, their savings would begin immediately.

Familiar with combined heat and power (CHP) or cogeneration systems (the technology behind the On-Site Utility), Mr. Rich assumed the purchase and installation costs of a cogeneration system at Penacook to be cost-prohibitive and that financing made no sense. But, with American DG Energy, no installation costs and no capital expenditure were required. According to Mr. Rich, “once I learned the specifics, selecting American DG Energy’s On-Site Utility energy solution was one of the easiest executive decisions I’ve ever made. It was a no-brainer.”

American DG Energy handled all permitting and necessary modifications to the existing infrastructure required to install a 75 kW On-Site Utility, which includes a natural gas cogeneration unit, just outside the boiler room at Penacook Place. The On-Site Utility produces both electrical and thermal energy at Penacook; it is the first source of electricity for ventilation and air conditioning and the first source of hot water for bathing, cooking, and space heating at the facility.

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American DG Energy sells the energy produced by the On-Site Utility to Penacook at a price guaranteed to be lower than the local utility. Penacook only pays for the energy used; they don’t pay any operating costs and they don’t maintain the equipment. All operating responsibili-ties are handled by the experts at American DG Energy.

As an added benefit, the On-Site Utility significantly lowers Penacook’s greenhouse gas emissions, offsetting as much as 306 tons of CO2 gas each year, the equivalent of planting 83 acres of trees or eliminating the emissions of 52 cars.

Penacook is pleased with the On-Site Utility and happy to let American DG Energy own, operate and maintain it. Penacook realizes the advantages of a clean, efficient energy system at no risk. And not having to pay for it was key to its being implemented. “We could not have afforded this highly-efficient energy system without American DG Energy,” said Mr. Rich. “Not needing to finance this project made it possible.”

Project Highlights:

  • Installed a 75 kW natural gas cogeneration unit
  • Utilized cogeneration unit thermal output to generate domestic hot water
  • Modified piping and controls for the heating and domestic hot water architecture
  • Eliminated use of boilers during the non-heating season
  • All operating responsibilities handled by American DG Energy
  • Installed additional metering to monitor system operation
  • Reduced annual operating expenditures of boiler system
  • Reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 306 tons of CO2 annually

Trent Center East / Trenton, New Jersey

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Background
Trent Center East is a 229-unit senior housing high-rise building located in Trenton, NJ. Built in the early 1960s, Trent Center East enables its 250 residents to enjoy active and independent living.

Trent Center East was running a twenty year old single effect steam absorption chiller to provide air-conditioning during the summer months. Because of its age, the old chiller was no longer able to meet the cooling needs of the building, had lost significant efficiency and had become expensive to maintain. Additionally, running the old absorption chiller required keeping the steam plant operating during the summer. This created further operating problems for the building. The resulting boiler operating costs for air-conditioning alone was $150,000.
“As a non-profit housing organization, we have to be proactive to limit our operating costs,” explained Lionel Kier, Executive Director of BTC Management Corp and the Managing Agent for the owners of Trent Center East Apartments. “When we observed a substantial degradation of performance of the existing air conditioning system, we realized we needed to upgrade our equipment, but still wanted to avoid a major capital expenditure.”
Solution
Working with Trent Center East, American DG Energy evaluated the historical use patterns for the existing cooling equipment. Subsequently, American DG Energy determined that installing a new 200 ton natural gas engine driven chiller to replace the twenty year old single effect steam absorption chiller would allow Trent Center East to realize both a notable increase in cooling capacity and a decrease in operating costs.

Even before reviewing American DG Energy’s recommendations, Mr. Kier was aware of the need to shut down the existing steam plant during the summer cooling season. “We knew we could save money if we didn’t need to run the boiler year round,” mentioned Mr. Kier, “and we wanted to take advantage of technology that complements our existing cogeneration equipment. So, instead of upgrading a twenty year old absorption chiller in a forty-one year old building, we decided to let American DG Energy install a new natural gas fired chiller that we wouldn’t have to buy or maintain.”

At no cost to Trent Center East, the new natural gas engine driven chiller was installed by American DG Energy in a matter of a few weeks.American DG Energy handled all permitting, necessary modifications to the existing infrastructure and complete installation of the new chiller.

Since Trent Center East did not pay any up-front costs to install the chiller, they were able to avoid a $450,000 expense. Because American DG Energy’s dedicated operations group handles all management, service and maintenance, Trent Center East needs no manpower to support the equipment and avoids the ever-increasing maintenance expense, which had cost them $20,000 per year.

Now Trent Center East only pays for the cooling or chilled water supplied every month. Each monthly invoice presents how much cooling was produced and includes the site savings. For Trent Center East, they are applying the savings to other projects.

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With the new chiller in place, Trent Center East realized a significant increase in cooling performance. Now its residents can enjoy the comfort of their air-conditioned apartments and Trent Center East’s public spaces when outside summer temperatures soar.

According to Mr. Kier, “Costs are only going to go up, but still we’re looking for ways to reduce operating costs or at least decrease the increase in operating costs. This new chiller from American DG Energy, along with the cogeneration equipment we already have, will allow us to do that.”

Project Highlights:
Trent Center East achieved the following goals at no cost:

  • Installed a new 200 ton natural gas engine driven chiller
  • Avoided capital expense of $450,000
  • Annual site savings of $30,000 (not including boiler savings)
  • Increased cooling capacity for the building
  • Eliminated Trent Center East’s cost and responsibility for chiller system maintenance
  • Reduced year-round demand on the old boiler system including summer shutdown of steam plant
  • Upgraded piping and controls
  • Installed additional metering to monitor system operation