Aquarion Water Installing New Clean Energy Recovery Devices Supplied by Rentricity Inc.
Major water company will test a new class of clean, renewable energy based on smart microturbine technology and distributed power generation developed by Rentricity, Inc.
Bridgeport, Conn. (PRWEB) November 15, 2003
Aquarion Water Company, one of the 10 largest investor-owned water utilities in the United States, and alternative energy company Rentricity, Inc. will launch a pilot program to transform excess pressure within water pipes into electricity by using a new microturbine technology designed by Rentricity. Aquarion will install RentricityÂs new Flow-to-Wire(sm) devices to pressure reduction valves (PRVs) in vaults that currently relieve excess pressure from water being delivered to customers at lower elevations than the water source.
This pilot program represents the first application of a Rentricity Flow-to-Wire(sm) device in a public water supply system and intends to enhance infrastructure while providing a new source of clean, renewable energy and revenue for utilities. The power can be delivered to consumers through connections to the electric utility grid, or offset existing demand by the water utility. A single Rentricity device is expected to produce enough power to meet the energy needs of between 20 and 100 average homes, thereby reducing the electrical load traveling into the area on heavily stressed transmission lines.
The nine-month pilot program will involve the installation of a Flow-to-Wire(sm) system in a number of locations in the Southwest Region of Connecticut. ÂWe are excited to explore the use of this new technology to improve our existing infrastructure and operations while helping to address the areaÂs power problems with an environmentally friendly solution,Â says Peter Galant, Aquarion Water CompanyÂs vice president of technology, environment and planning.
Besides adding a new source of revenue from energy recovery, the Flow-to-Wire(sm) device works to provide important information about the water flowing through the pipes and valves found within typical underground vaults. The Flow-to-Wire(sm) devices consist of a microturbine, generator, sensors, processors, electronic controls, and communications equipment that operate autonomously. Integrated ÂsmartÂ sensors will enable Rentricity to offer utility partners its RenFlow(sm) information services, which provide real-time system performance data to improve operational efficiencies.
ÂWhile the Flow-to-Wire(sm) devices will initially be targeted for use within public water supply systems, we believe the technology is capable of recovering untapped energy from other commercial and industrial pressurized piping systems,Â says Frank Zammataro, president and co-founder of Rentricity. ÂThe arrangement we have with Aquarion Water Company will establish a basis for validating this new form of renewable energy.Â
Rentricity expects to take advantage of concentrated water flow to ramp operations and is exploring additional sites in Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey. The company believes that there is a sizable network of domestic water systems that can take advantage of the Flow-to-Wire(sm) system. The international Âmicro-hydropowerÂ market is projected to be five to 10 times larger than the U. S. market, with between 7,500 and 25,000 potential locations worldwide. Golder Associates, a global environmental engineering firm, is supporting the pilot.
Rentricity was named one of the ÂMost Promising CompaniesÂ by the over 200 investor attendees at the recently held Energy Venture Fair IV in Philadelphia where 75 emerging energy sector companies presented. Rentricity will next present at the National Renewable Energy LabÂs 16th Annual Growth Forum in Austin, TX on November 17 - 19.
Aquarion Company's principal business is public water supply. Through its Aquarion Water Company subsidiaries, it is one of the 10 largest investor-owned water utilities in the U. S., serving 211,000 homes and businesses, or approximately 677,000 people in 53 Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts and New Hampshire communities. Aquarion Water Company of Connecticut provides high-quality water to 170,400 customers, or more than 587,000 people, including approximately 19,000 in Fairfield. For more information on Aquarion Company and its subsidiaries, please contact us on the Internet at www. aquarion. com or www. aquarionwater. com.
Rentricity, Inc. is an early-stage Delaware corporation focused on transforming untapped energy in various man-made processes into renewable electricity, including distributed generation. Rentricity is part of the Rensselaer Incubator Program. The Company's founders can be reached at www. rentricity. com.