Challenge: Access to sustainable power in Canada’s far North
Solution: Developing the next-generation energy system
Prince Edward Island-based Frontier Power Systems' innovation is providing light to some of Canada's most northern communities — regions where access to energy sources has remained almost impossible.
The need is real. Many northern communities rely solely on diesel-fueled community generators. These generators are costly to run, challenging to maintain, and under increasing pressure to meet the rising energy demands of growing village populations. And an overloaded generator is an unreliable generator. Delivering fuel to remote areas in extreme arctic weather is difficult at best, impossible at worst, and expensive all the time. Diesel systems also pose a number of environmental concerns, and leave a significant carbon footprint.
Frontier's General Manager Carl Brothers wants to help Canada's remote, northern communities keep the lights on. Literally. "Our engineers have spent the last 15 years developing wind energy technology for remote locations and we have established ourselves as industry leaders in the sector," he says.
Frontier is pioneering a new approach to provide off-the-grid communities with energy security in the form of smart grid technology and a 3-tiered renewable energy system incorporating wind, diesel and an advanced battery storage system. The result is reliable, affordable, renewable power delivered by technology specifically designed for arctic use.
This system includes redesigned wind turbines, variable speed diesel generators and an advanced battery storage system, all engineered to work seamlessly together for uninterrupted power delivery. Meaning that the lights — and the heat — will stay on in places that need them the most.
The work required is expected to create upwards of 14 new positions with the company, in addition to the nine highly-skilled employees already employed. The new energy system provides a more reliable and environmentally-friendly way of producing electricity in communities that rely mostly on antiquated and expensive diesel-fueled community generators.
Pioneers such as Frontier Power Systems are positioning Atlantic Canada as part of a global centre for innovation. They are also proof of Atlantic Canada's commitment to other areas of the country, while bringing this innovative technology outside our borders to international markets as well, all with a single goal in mind: providing an accessible, affordable energy solution for remote communities around the world.
Partnerships, such as the one with the Government of Canada, also play a key role in Frontier's continued growth. With support from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), the government is helping Frontier create jobs while bringing reliable electricity to remote, off-grid, arctic communities. An investment of nearly $1.8 million will help Frontier complete the development of a next generation arctic power system that consists of multiple wind turbines, diesel generators, advanced energy storage system and distributed thermal energy storage units.
Frontier Power Systems is a prime example of how innovation and resourcefulness fuel Atlantic Canada's economy, at home and beyond.
For more information on programs and services available to businesses in Atlantic Canada call 1-800-561-7862 or go to canada.ca/acoa.