Galena Power Plant Upgrades

The City of Galena in Alaska operates a microgrid and serves around 500 customers and generates up to 1000kW. Coffman provided multi-phase planning and engineering support for a project that focused on modernizing the Galena powerplant and integrating solar PV and battery energy storage to the isolated microgrid.

The project included designing an automated generator switchgear, performing energy modeling, and developing sizing recommendations for solar PV and battery systems based on energy and cost projections, and evaluating economics and operational impacts.

Coffman provided engineering, estimating, contracting, and construction support for the replacement of the medium voltage generator switchgear and powerplant control system. This effort included developing functional requirements for the switchgear to perform automatic dispatch of generation assets, outage recovery, load and VAR sharing, and full replacement of metering, generator and feeder relaying, and SCADA systems. The work also included the replacement of two diesel generator sets and infrastructure readiness for the connection of a future solar PV and battery energy storage project.

Challenges abound in rural Alaska construction projects. For this project, an abandoned power plant had to be rehabilitated in order to supply power to the community during construction at the main plant. Shipping is by river barge, which operates approximately four months per year, severely limiting the shipment of supplies and equipment. Close coordination with contractors and utility operators helped keep the construction schedule on track.

Coffman values its relationship with the City of Galena and is proud of our role in this multi-phase project.


  • Energy & Utility


  • Alternative Energy
  • Battery Energy Storage Systems
  • Commissioning
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electrical Instrumentation & Controls
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Project Management
  • Structural Engineering