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District Energy Solar Thermal System, St. Paul (2012)
This case study focuses on the district energy solar thermal heating system installed on the Saint Paul River Centre in St. Paul, Minnesota. At the time of the installation in 2011, this was the largest known solar thermal hot water heating installation in the United States.
The 23,000 square foot installation not only provides hot water to the River Centre, but it also distributes the excess hot water produced on-site into a distribution system which heats 80 percent of the buildings in downtown Saint Paul. The project was partially funded through a grant from the Department of Energy’s Solar America Communities program, and also a partnership with the City of Saint Paul and the State of Minnesota. The roof of the River Centre had to be reengineered to support the weight of the system.
Author: Thomas Stoneburner, P.E., LEED AP
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