Reduce Electrical Load

How a cultivation startup outsmarted the electrical utility and launched on time

The funds had been committed to build a new facility, then at the last minute the electric utility said, “we’ll have enough power for your facility in 12 to 18 months”.  What do you do then? This was the dilemma faced by an indoor agriculture startup based in Massachusetts. Waiting a year wasn’t an option. Customers were waiting, investors were ready with their check book and finding a new location in time wasn’t going to happen. They needed to find a creative solution to open on schedule.

Solar was a possibility, but they would need land the size of multiple football fields and they had a 24/7 operation. Fortunately, one of their biggest electrical loads was cooling. Growing indoors requires constant cooling to keeping the plants at optimum temperature, and humidity control to avoid mold. If they could reduce the amount of electricity needed for cooling, they would be able to open on time. If they needed additional power, they could always add some on-site electrical generation.

Indoor agriculture, like many other industrial applications, has significant upfront cost. To compete, they had to carefully control their operating costs so they could pay their investors back quickly and expand to the next facility. If they were able to reduce their operating costs significantly at the same time as solving their power shortage problem, then they had a winning solution.

This is where Tecochill engine driven chillers came in. The Tecogen chillers can generate on-site cooling using a natural gas engine. The waste heat is recovered from the engine so both chilled water and hot water are produced simultaneously. The air temperature is lowered using chilled water to remove the humidity and then reheated to the operating temperature using the waste heat. The Tecochill only takes 2KW of power to operate compared to 300KW for an equivalent electric chiller.

Twice the efficiency, half the cost

The efficiency advantages meant that the operating costs for the Tecochill plant was half that of an electric chiller. The power shortage issue was solved and as a bonus, the high efficiencies of the Tecogen chiller meant the greenhouses gasses were reduced by 40 to 60%.

More and more businesses looking to expand can’t get enough power from the utility during peak times in many regions. If you’re spending more than $100,000 on energy a year, unreliable power, or lack of power when you need it could cripple you. Reducing these expenses substantially could allow you to put the savings towards expanding your business and has an incredibly short payback.

40% Tax Credit

The federal government recognizes how critical these technologies are and is presently offering a 40% investment tax credit for anyone who invests in this technology in 2024.

Tecogen has shipped more than 3,200 units and our equipment has collectively run more than 10 million hours. Contact us now on sales@tecogen.com or fill out the form below so you can find out how much you can save. 

See if our Clean Energy Solutions are Right for Your Facility

Tecogen is the leading provider of cost efficient, clean and reliable products for power production, heating and cooling, nearly eliminating criteria pollutants and significantly reducing your carbon footprint. For a Free Site Assessment to see if our clean energy is right for your facility, tell us a little bit about yourself.

This site is protected by hCaptcha and its Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.