Energy plant honored for innovation
Archived article from Sep 15, 2000
By Pam Orel
The Busch cogeneration plant, which produces electricity and hot water for the Busch and Livingston campuses, has earned a certificate of recognition from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under a new program designed to encourage innovation among power-generating facilities.
The Combined Heat and Power Certificate of Recognition honors cost-effective power-generating facilities that increase the nation's electric power capabilities while minimizing pollutants. The program is managed by the EPA's EnergyStar program, which encourages energy efficiency and pollution reduction. Rutgers is one of only three facilities in the country honored with the certificate.
The plant, in service since 1995, uses natural gas to produce 13.5 million watts of electric power each day, enough to meet the needs of 2,700 single-family homes. It produces roughly 90 percent of the electric power for the university's Busch and Livingston campuses each winter and half the campuses' electricity in the summer.
"This plant delivers. It has been an efficient and reliable source of energy for the two campuses since it first went into service in 1995," said Richard Bankowski, manager of utility services for Rutgers.
Cogeneration plants produce two types of energy from a single fuel. The Busch plant uses natural gas, which is burned to generate electricity via a turbine generator. Heat generated in that process is used to heat water under pressure to 370 degrees Fahrenheit. The water is then piped to various buildings. This "thermal recycling" reduces emissions and improves the efficiency of the operation.
A virtual tour of the Busch cogeneration facility is available at http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/~jonflrty">www.rci.rutgers.edu/~jonflrty/.