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Sun (Master) Stroke: Solar Trigeneration in Action

Atop the University of Technology Sydney’s Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology building is a micro-urban power station that provides students and researchers with a glimpse into the future of distributed renewable energy generation.

So often, much of the debate surrounding renewable energy gets bogged down into the difficulties of reducing Australia’s
dependency on brown and black coal electricity generation.

But what if the solution is a multifaceted one? What if a combination of renewables is actually the key?

And what if they are combined into one urbanised plant?

These are some of the questions being answered by the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), where a micro-urban
power station is demonstrating that the innovative generation and use of solar energy can provide energy for building services, chilled water and hot water.

Installed on the rooftop of the university’s Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology (FEIT) building this micro power station is made up of three key pieces of equipment: solar-thermal collectors (STC), an Organic Rankin Cycle (ORC) turbine, and an absorption chiller.

The building also features a solar photovoltaic (PV) array and a wind turbine.

These are all tied together with 100kWh flow-technology batteries that supply an isolated mini-grid that runs throughout
the building.

“The students get to see, touch and engage with real, working, renewable energy systems,” says Jeremy Osborne,
M.AIRAH, of Energy Analysis & Engineering (Energy AE), which designed elements of the system in consultation with NEP Solar.

“It is a glimpse into the future of distributed energy generation.”

Source: AIRAH

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