Cape Cod Military Base Runs on 100% Renewable Energy

by | Sep 11, 2018


The Otis Microgrid project, the first of such a broad scope for a Department of Defense installation, will provide electrical capabilities almost exclusively based on renewable energy while ensuring a high-level of grid security. The energy security and resiliency provided by the microgrid is critical to the 24/7 mission of the 102nd Intelligence Wing, a military intelligence unit located at Otis Air National Guard Base in Massachusetts.

First announced in 2015, the microgrid came to realization in the form of a $6 million grant from the Defense Department’s Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP). ESTCP is the DoD’s technology demonstration and validation program established to promote environmentally-friendly projects that demonstrate the most innovative and cost-effective technologies and methods that address high-priority environmental requirements. Projects conduct formal demonstrations at DoD facilities, in operational settings, to document and validate improved performance and cost savings.

Since breaking ground, a number of military, government and commercial organizations have been involved in the design, planning and implementation of the system. Civil engineer and communications Airmen from the 102 IW and Army Reserves Soldiers from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, teamed up with technicians and engineers from companies such as Raytheon, to ensure the project came together efficiently and effectively.

In 2016, the wing hosted a leadership summit on the project. Then Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Installations, Environment and Energy Miranda Ballentine said, “The resilient energy system project at Otis ANG Base is an excellent example of innovative airmen driving mission assurance through energy assurance. The 102nd Intelligence Wing has critical missions requiring uninterrupted access to electricity.” She went on to say, “By integrating renewable energy, advanced energy storage, and innovative controls, this system will provide vital capabilities to our warfighters and intelligence professionals.”

The Otis Microgrid will completely transform how the base manages and utilizes energy, and will serve as a model for future grid modernization projects in the future.


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