Jasper County Jail 

Transforming Jasper County Jail with Sustainable Energy

Jasper County Jail, grappling with extreme temperatures and high energy costs since 2007, finally found a solution through Solential Energy’s comprehensive energy overhaul. This initiative brought a much-needed change to the jail, housing 70 employees and an average of 80 inmates in northern Indiana, where winters are notably harsh.

Challenges: High Costs and Inefficiency

For years, the jail struggled to maintain a warm and safe environment, resorting to space heaters and extra clothing. An unsuccessful attempt in 2012 to fix the HVAC and energy issues left the facility with monthly energy bills averaging $25,000. In 2019, county commissioners turned to Solential Energy for an effective resolution.

Customized Energy Audit and Solution

Solential’s approach began with an in-depth audit of the jail’s structure, mechanical systems, lighting, air quality, and energy usage. The resulting solution focused on several critical areas:

  • Improved Building Envelope: Addressing insulation and window issues to reduce heat loss and energy costs.
  • Upgraded Lighting: Switching to energy-efficient LED fixtures for longer life and lower maintenance.
  • Enhanced HVAC System: Rectifying design and control issues while retaining original equipment, optimized for peak performance.
  • Advanced Controls: Implementing a web-based interface for better control, monitoring, and scheduling of the HVAC system.
  • Solar PV Installation: A 1.1 MW solar field was installed to provide renewable energy and stabilize long-term energy costs.

Outcomes: Safety, Comfort, and Energy Independence

The energy overhaul, completed in January 2021, marked a significant turning point. For the first time in 15 years, the jail achieved a safe, comfortable environment with stabilized energy costs and 24/7 monitoring capabilities. The solar installation now generates 50-100% of the jail’s energy needs, resolving long-standing energy issues and contributing to a more sustainable, efficient facility.

Project Details


Location:
Rensselaer, IN


Project Size:
811 kW


Services:
Ground mount fixed tilt solar PV

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