St Eustache School Biomass Boiler Feasibility Study

St Eustache, MB

Prairie Rose School Division

Prime Consultant:
Alliance Engineering Services Inc.

Engineering Services Provided:
Building energy analysis, energy simulations,
life cycle costing and process flow schematics.

Project Completion:

As part of the Manitoba Hydro's Bioenergy Optimization Program, École St Eustache was identified as a suitable candidate to establish a Biomass Boiler Heating System as their primary heat source. Prairie Rose School Division which operates the school subsequently released a request for proposal to consulting firms to conduct a feasibility study to convert the existing electric boiler system to a biomass boiler heating system. AESI was the successful respondent to this RFP.

The main components of the feasibility study were modelling and simulating the facilities energy usage, review biomass boiler technology to present options of the system conversion, reviewing relevant codes, sourcing suitable biomass fuel products, identifying supporting infrastructure requirements and cost benefit analysis. During the feasibility study a review of the existing energy consumption was cross referenced with the facility model and energy simulations. A large discrepancy was found between the actual consumption and estimated consumption. This led AESI to investigate the issue further, which determined that the ventilation system for the school was not providing adequate fresh air during the winter months. To ensure that the Biomass Boiler System would be sized appropriately the building energy model was used for determining boiler size.

The cost benefit analysis of the proposed project determined that the proposed project was not viable from an economic standpoint. This was demonstrated through a negative net present value and a simple payback that exceeded the anticipated operational life of the biomass boiler system.


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