The University of Guelph has built thermal energy storage facility that uses cooled water to deliver air conditioning throughout its facilities.
John Kuri of the engineering consultancy MCW Group, commented on the facility: “We’re generating all the cooling requirements for the university at night, storing all that cold water in the tank, and then during the daytime when electricity is at its peak and most expensive, we’re drawing from that cold water storage tank and cooling the university.”
Saving nearly 11 cents per kilowatt hour by using grid energy to cool the water at off-peak times, the energy storage facility has provided the university with a 7-MW reduction in energy usage throughout the summer months. “That 7-MW during peak power times, allows the province not to actually look at having to invest in billions of dollars of building new generating facilities,” said Ontario Minister of Energy Glenn Thibeault.
The first large-scale facility of this type in Ontario, cooling the water at night results in a system that Mr. Kuri said can be considered “emissions-neutral.”