INFORMATION AT A GLANCE
Location: Sudbury, Ontario
MW Production: 10.5 MW
Products: Caterpillar G3612; Caterpillar G3616
Primary Fuel Type: Natural gas
About The Local Energy System
Sudbury District Energy Corporation (SDEC) is the first district energy combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Northern, Ontario. Toromont Power Systems operates SDEC as a public/private partnership with the City of Greater Sudbury and Greater Sudbury Utilities, creating Canada's first district-energy, public-private partnership
City of Greater Sudbury, with support from Sudbury Hydro and Toromont Power Systems, developed a 5 MW CHP facility that services seven major buildings in the downtown core, including two office towers and a federal government building, with hot water for heating and chilled water for cooling, and provides power to the Ontario grid. The district energy system uses a central energy plant to meet the heating, cooling and other energy needs of buildings within a specific urban cluster. Natural gas powered engines at the SDEC plant generate thermal energy in the form of hot water, which is then distributed through an underground network of pipes to individual buildings.
Each building that uses the district energy pipe circuit has a heat exchanger on-site that transfers the thermal energy in the hot water to the building's radiators or air handling equipment. Once the energy is removed, the cooled water is returned to the central plant for reheating and redistribution as well the electricity generated by the engines in heating the water is fed back to the hydro grid or used as backup power in case of an emergency. While majority of the district energy available in Sudbury remains concentrated in the downtown, SDEC operates a stand-alone co-generation plant at the Sudbury Regional Hospital that can provide heating, cooling, electricity and steam to the hospital.
To meet performance incentives, the generator set needs to run virtually 24 hours a day. Every 15 minutes’ data is collected for kilowatts generated and the amount of natural gas consumed to ensure the generator is working properly.
Two Caterpillar G3612 natural gas CHP systems were installed in the plant and produces 5.0 MW of electrical power. Natural gas powered engines at the SDEC plant generate 4.4 MW of thermal energy in the form of hot water, which is then distributed through an underground network of pipes to commercial and municipal buildings in the downtown core.
A few years later, Toromont Power Systems constructed 6.7 MW natural gas CHP plant inside of the Sudbury Regional Hospital (Laurentian Site) to provide the hospital with heating, cooling and electricity. The plant consisted of two installed two Caterpillar G3616 natural gas CHP systems, reciprocating engine-generator sets, thermal heat transfer equipment, thermal heat rejection equipment, medium voltage switchgear, motor control centres, control panels, utility interconnection (protection, metering, communications), building envelope and building systems and remote control and monitoring The CHP plant also produces 6 MW of thermal energy in the form of steam to heat and cool the hospital. The electrical power is connected to the hospital’s electrical system and excess generated power is exported to the local utility grid. The thermal power of steam and hot water is used within the hospital for heating, disinfection, humidification, and cooling using an absorption chiller.
To meet performance incentives, the units needs to run virtually 24 hours a day. Every 15 minutes’ data is collected for kilowatts generated and the amount of natural gas consumed to ensure the generator is working properly. All maintenance is performed by Toromont technicians as part of a long-term Customer Support Agreement. Technical support is available 24/7 to help the hospital keep the cogeneration plant running, or to assist with technical issues.
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