Voltage power optimisation for Kiama Council

Tuesday, 29 July, 2014 | Supplied by: Forum Group

Kiama Municipal Council in NSW has developed a sustainability theme called ‘Kiamasphere’, which aims to bring together all of its projects across the council that relate to environmental management and sustainability. One of the measures implemented was voltage power optimisation (VPO).

Solar panels have been introduced at the council administration building, which are expected to produce an estimated 15,060 kWh of electricity per annum - approximately 5% of the building’s energy. The council has also introduced power factor correction technology, which reduces demand.

Having started generating energy at the administrative building, the council was also keen to reduce the overall energy consumption. The council reviewed various technologies and chose Forum Group’s powerPerfector VPO for the following reasons:

  • Other technologies including lighting upgrades would incur significant disruption. VPO was seen as non-disruptive to everyday council life.
  • Other technologies including lighting are continually developing and the council was not sure when the best time to implement them would be, as they quickly become out of date and prices are likely to come down in the coming years.
  • Upgrading the HVAC was seen as problematic and cost-prohibitive.
  • The site had an existing overvoltage issue which was impacting on the life span and operability of electrical equipment, and the VPO could deal with this issue for the entire site.

Forum Group specified a 210 kVA fixed unit with a 10% optimisation. This was subsequently installed at the council’s administration building on 19 December 2013.

Independent post-installation analysis indicates that electrical energy consumption following the VPO installation is 13.2% lower than the pre-VPO installation levels once temperature variations have been taken into account. This equates to annual savings of 43,936 kWH, 39 tonnes of CO2 and $7302.

Regression analysis: Kiama Municipal Council administration building.

“In my experience, there is lot of marketing and claims attached to many energy-efficiency products,” noted Byron Robinson, environment and sustainability officer at Kiama Municipal Council. “In researching the technology, we found that many of Forum’s powerPerfector claims were backed up by real-world examples.”

“The independently verified savings have exceeded the guaranteed savings, and the council is delighted with the results from this project.”

Online: www.forumgroup.com.au
Phone: 1300 854 856
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