Carl Brothers, General Manager of Frontier Power Systems explains the control system on one of the company’s completely redesigned wind turbines. (From left) Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food; Carl Brothers; and Heath MacDonald, Minister of Economic Development and Tourism. Photo Credit: Aila Arsenault

A new approach to powering the north

Carl Brothers wants to help remote, northern communities keep the lights on. Literally.

Brothers is the general manager of Frontier Power Systems, a Prince Edward Island company that is developing next-generation energy systems to provide sustainable power to off-the-grid communities in the far north.

“Our engineers have spent the last 15 years developing wind energy technology for remote locations and we have established ourselves as industry leaders in the sector,” he says.

The need is real. Many northern communities rely solely on diesel-fueled community generators. These generators are costly to run, challenging to maintain, and are under increasing pressure to meet the rising energy demands of growing village populations. And an overloaded generator is an unreliable generator. Delivering fuel to remote areas in extreme arctic weather is difficult at best, impossible at worst, and expensive all the time. Diesel systems also pose a number of environmental concerns, and leave a significant carbon footprint.

Frontier Power Systems is pioneering a new approach to provide off-the-grid communities with energy security in the form of smart grid technology and a three-tiered renewable energy system incorporating wind, diesel and an advanced battery storage system. The result is reliable, affordable, renewable power delivered by technology specifically designed for arctic use. This system includes redesigned wind turbines, variable speed diesel generators and an advanced battery storage system—all engineered to work seamlessly together for uninterrupted power delivery. Meaning that the lights—and the heat—will stay on in places that need them the most.

With a $1.8-million investment from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), Frontier Power Systems will continue its work to bring this innovative technology to both Canadian and international markets, with a goal of providing an accessible, affordable energy solution for remote communities around the world.

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