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A match made in energetic heaven: Island Energy Services

When it comes to being 30 miles out to sea, there isn't a lot we can take for granted. Especially in moments of inclement weather as we've recently experienced, islanders are often reminded of just how remote our little island is, as our food supplies, newspapers, even gasoline can be days delayed leaving us to depend on our immediate and proximate resources.

Island Energy Services is among those resources, holding the lion share of energy management among Nantucket's thousands of houses. Recently rebranded to encompass all of their energy offerings, Harbor Fuel, Yates Island Gas, and Airport Gas, Island Energy Services understands the importance of being there for your clients in the moments you need them most, and enlisted ACK Smart Energy to do just that for themselves.

First contacting ACK Smart in the fall of 2019, Island Energy Services was in the initial stages of their campus buildout on 11 Industry Road. David McDougal, director of Island Energy Services, was keen to develop a solar solution that would aid the energy consumption of their buildout. After doing a review of all of their existing facilities to gain an understanding of their total electricity usage, ACK Smart was able to design for them a solar installation that makes sense for the business, saving considerable money throughout the year, and that allows Island Energy Services the ability to provide sustainable, renewable energy on Nantucket.

"We were super excited to work with Island Energy Services," Tim Caruthers, Director of Operations at ACK Smart said. "They are a forward-looking company and want to do their part in helping the island import less electricity from the mainland."

The installation process was a dream project for ACK Smart Energy and one that will benefit Island Energy Services immensely in the years to come. The system has 87 solar panels for a total power of 28.3 kW, which at this time is currently producing up to 200 kWH a day. For the month of August, the system has provided for 97% of the office and garage/workshop facility's electric needs. That essentially means all facility work at 11 Industry is courtesy of the Nantucket sunshine. Not bad for the Grey Lady!

Due to the relentless nature of the work that Island Energy Services executes on a daily basis on Nantucket, ACK Smart was met with the unique and exciting challenge of designing and constructing a battery backup room that is completely dedicated to solar and clean energy.

"We were able to work with Island Energy Services early in their construction so that we got a dedicated utility room," Caruthers said. "It contains the batteries, inverters, solar panel board and transfer switch, which switches power to the batteries in the event of a complete grid failure." Essentially this battery backup room provides Island Energy Services the comfort and control required when an islands-worth of properties relies on your services. And in moments like Hurricane Henri thundering toward the island, this is a security blanket we couldn't afford to live without.

The installation at 11 Industry may be complete, but the collaborative work will continue for ACK Smart and Island Energy Services. The combined initiative of forward-thinking, customer-centered, and focused work that provides the Nantucket community with practical, equitable, and secure energy solutions is now the motivation for continued partnerships that will allow Nantucket customers to not just select a type of energy that makes the most sense for them, but that makes the most sense for sustainability and island longevity.

It's a match made in energy heaven.


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