Innovative solar generation system powers resort’s reverse osmosis water plant while reducing energy costs; sets standard for other Caribbean islands and resorts
South Bend, Indiana, March 26 2015—Inovateus Solar announced today that it has completed the installation of a 1.0-megawatt (MW) solar power generation plant for the CuisinArt Golf Resort & Spa in Anguilla, BWI, an island in the Caribbean east of Puerto Rico.
The solar power system uses a battery backup system to store energy, providing an uninterruptible ability to supply energy to the Reverse Osmosis (RO) plant throughout the day. The RO plant creates potable solar water to the residents on the island, guests of the resort and irrigation water for the golf course.
The project has been designed in such a way that it is completely isolated from the grid. It also has the unique benefit of being able to reconnect partial loads, in a discretionary way, to continue to desalinate outside solar production hours. For those hours when the sun is down, it depends on the local utility, Anguilla Electricity Company Ltd. (Anglec).
Anguilla recently joined the Carbon War Room 10-Island Challenge to reduce the Caribbean carbon impact and Inovateus and CuisinArt are pleased to be the only significant positive step into renewables. The new solar plant saves 1.2 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
“The payback on this project will immediately save CuisinArt hundreds of thousands of dollars per year,” says Peter Rienks of Inovateus. “Even more important, it provides a solution to the global water crisis. This system could be duplicated on any island in any country around the world.”
Fresh water scarcity is a global issue, and is particularly acute in the Caribbean islands. Utilizing solar power to convert salt water to potable water for human consumption is an important concept that must be promoted worldwide, according to Rienks.
According to Rory Purcell, the resort’s Chief Engineer, “We know that this initiative is viable and secure. It is a proven strategy to penetrate the national demand with renewable energy far in excess of the usual grid tied limits. PV is a low “environmental impact source, designed to withstand Category 5 hurricanes, low flying objects and poorly directed golf balls. It has a low maintenance requirement with a life expectancy in excess of 25 years. This technology is available to all who are interested and can transform the economies and quality of life for so many similar societies,” Purcell says. The reduced energy cost represents significant savings for the Resort and is a standard-setting example to other Caribbean islands and resorts that operate in the region and across the world.
Located adjacent to the resort’s reverse osmosis plant, the solar array supports the plant’s daily capacity of 1.25 million gallons of fresh water. The water supply services the 130-key CuisinArt Resort featuring an 18-hole Greg Norman Signature Golf Course, the new 80-key Reef Hotel, an award-winning spa and six full-service restaurants. CuisinArt also operates hydroponic and organic farms, a 500,000 square foot residential estate, and irrigation systems for extensive landscaping and the 285-acre golf course.
GE was Inovateus’s partner on the project. “GE is happy to be part of the CuisinArt Resort solar project. CuisinArt and Conair have set a sustainable precedent for photovoltaic water purification throughout the world,” says Peter Foss, GE. “With GE’s wide variety of products available we were able to find the best solution to fit their needs. We congratulate CuisinArt on being forward thinkers and pushing the envelope. Not only will the project have a great return on investment, it will also help reduce the island’s dependence on fossil fuels and help create a cleaner environment for generations to come.”
The project was designed and installed by CuisinArt and Inovateus. The construction was ably supported by SwitchLogix and PDE Total Energy Solutions.