Micro District Heating and Electric Minibus Charging Project
Project Lead: Fetlar Developments Ltd
Award Amount: £104,104.95 – Combined total of three awards made in 2013 - 2015
Status: Complete (March 2015)
Fetlar Developments Ltd, a company limited by guarantee with charitable status, was set up in 2008 to address economic and depopulation of the remote island community in Shetland.
Fetlar does not have a fuel station and when the local post office suspended the ‘post bus’ service that also acted as a community vehicle it was necessary to find a sustainable and long-term solution. The community worked hard to raise funds and purchased an electric minibus that has been in operation since July 2013.
The scheme set out to install sufficient wind generation capacity to meet the electricity, hot water and space heating requirements of a micro district heating scheme and power to an electric minibus.
The scheme covers three properties including a private house and the local school. Two different methods are used to heat the two water storage tanks: one a flow heater and the other conventional heating elements with an internal plumbing system. By managing the temperature of the water it will be possible to balance out peaks in production against energy used. Whilst both systems should work effectively, the use of two systems has allowed their effectiveness to be evaluated alongside each other. It is estimated that annually the scheme will generate 197MWh of energy and save 84.7 tonnes of CO2.
1. Feasibility Study (Completed March 2013: £2,050).
Ecodyn Ltd were contracted to undertake the feasibility study to explore the design and viability of an integrated power generation, transport and heating system, through first considering the potential for a wind generation system. The report concluded that the site identified for the construction of a wind energy supply source would be suitable for two C&F20 turbines; however, the possibility of one Harbon turbine, operating with a higher potential output, was not ruled out. The risk related to securing planning permission for two turbines on site is also highlighted. In addition, the report discusses the fact that any installation that did receive an offer of a grid connection to the Northern Isles New Energy Solutions (NINES) Project would be constrained, and would have to be viable even when operating at zero export. A copy of the report is available from Fetlar Developments on request.
2. Purchase of EMMA and monitoring equipment (Completed March 2013: £18,841).
The award covered the purchase and installation of an Energy and Microgenerator Manager (EMMA) and monitoring equipment for the charging of the electric minibus and provision of power to the micro district heating scheme. The equipment enables the generated power to be divided between users from a planned wind installation.
3. Purchase and installation of heat storage tanks, heat exchanger, cabling and power management equipment (Completed March 2015: £83,213.95).
The award covered part of the purchase and installation costs of the heat exchanger, pipes, controls, power control and monitoring equipment and installation and supply, as well as the control building, project management, land acquisition costs. Additional funding was also secured through Shetland Islands Council and the European Regional Development Fund.
The scheme was able to confirm a 11kw of export capacity via a G83 grid connection and progressed the project with two higher rated C&F 25kW turbines within the export limit. The larger turbines will mean the scheme is able to better cope with periods of lower production. This will result in a higher percentage of the power used locally is from renewable sources.
Working in tandem with the project the local community set up Fetlar Wind Ltd, a Community Benefit Society, to raise funds for the purchase and installation of the two turbines that now power scheme. Funding was secured through Social Investment Scotland and a successful share offer in November 2015.
The turbines were installed in December 2015 and commissioned in January 2016.
Fetlar Wind: http://www.fetlarwind.co.uk/