Pittsburgh International Airport commissions a unique micro-grid supplying the entire facility with natural gas and solar energy
The one-of-a-kind micro-grid increases resilience and maximizes public safety and makes PIT one of the most secure airports in the world.
Airports across the country have explored ways to increase power resiliency and reliability after several large-scale power outages resulted in thousands of canceled flights and disruption to passengers. As PIT prepares to pave the way for building the world’s smartest airport with its new terminal project, creating a smart energy infrastructure is a key step that can serve as a model for other.
“Our region has innovation in its DNA, and the construction of this micro-grid reflects the work that has been done at the airport to maximize public safety and sustainability,” said Allegheny County Director. Rich Fitzgerald. “I am extremely proud that the airport uses nearly 10,000 solar panels as a source of sustainable energy. This, along with the other energy sources generated at the airport, continues to position this facility as an industry leader. and the whole team, for their work on this important project. ”
The electricity produced at the PIT is the main power supply for the entire airport, including the terminals, the airfield, the Hyatt hotel and Sunoco. The airport will remain connected to the optional traditional power grid for emergency or back-up power if required. The micro-grid will generate electricity, in part, from on-site natural gas wells and 9,360 solar panels on eight acres.
“Pittsburgh The international airport is today one of the most secure public facilities in the world while becoming more sustainable. It is a tribute to the innovative culture of our team, and we hope that this project can be a model throughout the industry, ”said Pittsburgh CEO of the international airport Christine Cassotis.
In 2019, the Allegheny County Airport Authority Board of Directors awarded Peoples Natural Gas a 20-year contract to build, maintain and operate the micro-grid at no cost to the airport. In addition to improving power resilience and redundancy, the micro-grid will save electricity costs for the airport and tenants.
The teams started construction in july 2020 and completed the project on time, even though the pandemic stalled the aviation industry last year.
“Essential Utilities and Peoples Gas are proud to be an integral part of the airport’s micro-grid project,” said Christophe franklin, President and CEO, Essential Utilities. “We are demonstrating how new alternative energies like solar can be integrated with traditional energy sources like natural gas. This energy solution provides the airport with a more resilient power supply, while reducing its emissions.
What is a micro-grid?
A microgrid is an independent source of electricity that can operate autonomously while maintaining a connection to the traditional grid. It will be fueled by natural gas drilled on site by CNX Resources, in addition to gas from the interstate pipeline network and solar generation. The project will provide a more efficient, sustainable and resilient source of energy.
The micro-grid will consist of five natural gas-powered generators and nearly 10,000 solar panels, capable of producing more than 20 megawatts of electricity, the equivalent of powering more than 13,000 residential homes. The airport’s current peak demand is approximately 14 megawatts.
Besides Peoples, other companies involved in the development of the microgrid included CNX Resources, IMG Energy Solutions, EIS Solar, PJ Dick, LLI Engineering and Duquesne Light Company.
About Allegheny County Airport Authority:
Allegheny County Airport Authority, which manages Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) and Allegheny County Airport (AGC) commit to transform Pittsburgh airports to reflect and serve the community, inspire the industry and advance the region’s role as a global leader. PIT has been named by Fast Company magazine as one of the world’s most innovative companies as well as a finalist for its World Changing Ideas awards, both in 2020. The Airport’s Safe Travels initiative is committed to abiding by Highest public health and safety standards in the airport industry. The initiative, following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, outlines best practices for keeping travelers healthy. For more information visit www.flypittsburgh.com.
About the peoples:
Peoples, an essential utility company, provides natural gas service to approximately 750,000 homes and businesses in Western Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Kentucky. Peoples is committed to its customers, employees, the environment and the regions it serves. For more information visit peopleshttp: //www.peoples-gas.com/gas.com and follow Peoples on social media @peoplesnatgas.
For information contact:
Bob Kerlik 412-472-3557 [email protected]
SOURCE Pittsburgh International airport