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Ice Energy, a provider of distributed thermal energy storage and smart grid solutions, has installed two Ice Bear energy storage systems for Connecticut-based utility United Illuminating Co. (UI) as a pilot project through the Energize Connecticut initiative, which is dedicated to helping citizens of the state make smart energy choices.

According to Ice Energy, the Ice Bears were installed at two commercial businesses located in Orange, Conn. The company says each unit was configured to provide both thermal energy storage and demand response.

At each site, Ice Energy reports that some of the air-conditioning load is permanently shifted from peak to off peak using thermal energy storage, and some of the load is subject to curtailment in an emergency using demand response. The pilot will go through this coming summer.

The company adds that the monitoring and evaluation of the performance of these units is being done in partnership with the University of New Haven's Tagliatela College of Engineering. Ravi Gorthala, a professor of mechanical engineering, and Amy Thompson, a professor of system and industrial engineering, will be providing critical data to determine the impact on the grid and these businesses.

"This pilot study and its results will provide good indicators of the capability of the Ice Bear technology and units to shift and reduce peak electric energy demand and to lower total costs for the business owner," comments Thompson.

The units were purchased by UI with funds as part of the Energize Connecticut initiative but will be owned by the end customer, Ice Energy notes.

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