Solent University’s new sports complex has connected to Southampton Geothermal Heating Company’s (SGHC) pioneering district energy scheme after signing a £2.8 million deal with energy and services specialist, ENGIE, over the next 20 years.
The SGHC is a working partnership between ENGIE and Southampton City Council, launching more than 30 years ago. The scheme supplies heat, chilled water and electricity to commercial and residential energy users across Southampton – currently serving a 2km radius of the energy centre.
Users already included TV studios, a hospital, shopping centre, student accommodation, residential buildings and hotels; with Solent University tasking ENGIE with the implementation of a new heating connection which would link up existing assets, as well as a new state-of-the-art sports centre.
The SGHC currently saves around 10,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per annum, using heat from a large-scale combined heat and power (CHP) plant, supplemented by geothermal energy and conventional boilers.
The University required a new District Heating connection with a substation, to provide heating and domestic hot water for the new facilities with predicted annual heating consumption of 620MWh/annum and a contractual peak load of 875 kW; which ENGIE is poised to deliver through the connection to SGHC.
Paul Colbran, Chief Info & Infrastructure Officer at Solent University, said: “Solent is undergoing a £100 million estate redevelopment programme to provide new and improve current campus facilities, and the new sports complex is just one element of that programme.
“With such a large infrastructure project and our desire to be cleaner, greener and more environmentally sustainable, the geothermal system helps us keep our emissions down and makes sense connecting with the current infrastructure already in place.”
ENGIE has confirmed the new system is now operational – delivering heating and cooling for the sports centre and beyond.