Schneider Electric developing $22.6M Energy Microgrid makeover at Hurlburt AFB Airfield in Florida

Dec. 14, 2021
Upgrades throughout Hurlburt Field's more than 300 buildings include 240 kW of canopy solar PV and a 265 kWh battery energy storage system with microgrid controls

By Rod Walton, EnergyTech Senior Editor

The U.S. Air Force airfield outside Destin, Florida, will gain a $22.6 million upgrade to energy infrastructure and renewables installation.

Schneider Electric will lead the modernization project at Hurlburt Field which is located on the Eglin AFB property. The energy savings performance project is expected to save $1.5 million in energy costs annually through the 22-year contract term with the U.S. Department of Defense, Schneider reported.

Upgrades throughout Hurlburt Field's more than 300 buildings include 240 kW of canopy solar PV and a 265-kWh battery energy storage system with microgrid controls designed to ensure reliable HVAC operations while improving operational resilience. Other improvements include base-wide LED lighting; transformer, HVAC and duct sealing upgrades; enhanced energy management control systems; and, replacing legacy controllers and software to support compliance with USAF cybersecurity requirements.

"Between both our location along the Gulf of Mexico and the global responsibilities of our AFSOC mission, our need to ensure the security and stability of our grid is imperative," said Steve Loken, the Hurlburt Field Civil Engineering Squadron Deputy. "The fact that we are able to implement energy conservation measures and renewables to self-fund these improvements will mean we can align with climate action goals for years to come."

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In addition to Hurlburt Field, Schneider Electric has worked on similar projects globally, including the Fort Huachuca Army installation (Arizona), Naval Base Coronado (California), Yokota Air Base (Japan), and Moody and Robins AFBs (Georgia). In total, Schneider Electric has been awarded 17 federal ESPCs and UESCs (Utility Energy Services Contracts), delivering more than $895 million in infrastructure modernization and energy improvements for federal agencies.