What Enel’s Buy of Demand Energy Says about Energy Storage and Microgrids

When a very big international company buys a very small company in an emerging area like energy storage and microgrids, you’ve got to ask, ‘What’s up?’ This week Italian energy giant Enel swooped in to take 100 percent ownership of Demand Energy, an entrepreneurial U.S. energy storage company based in Washington state. Pay attention U.S. … [Read more...]

Play a Game to Design a Rural Microgrid

Rural Microgrid

In developing countries, a major challenge to the success of a rural microgrid is gathering enough information about the community and its needs. To overcome this hurdle, Energy Action Partners has created a game—now in the testing phase. Called The Minigrid Game, it works by bringing together potential microgrid users, developers and … [Read more...]

Solar Plus Storage Microgrids Not a Fad: Navigant

Solar-plus-storage microgrids

Solar plus storage microgrids are gaining traction as their costs fall, according to a new report by Navigant Research. Diesel remains the leading generation technology, in terms of total capacity used in microgrids worldwide. Remote regions, where natural gas is unavailable, tend to rely on diesel. But that’s changing, and diesel’s lead is … [Read more...]

Ormat to Expand into Energy Storage and Demand Response by Acquiring Viridity

energy storage and demand response

Geothermal leader Ormat Technologies plans to diversify into energy storage and demand response with the $35 million acquisition of software and microgrid technology company Viridity Energy. The Nevada-based Ormat announced the deal today and hopes to close this year. Citing strong growth in energy storage, Ormat said the acquisition will … [Read more...]

How the Microgrid Industry Changed in 2016: A Ben & Jerry’s Year

microgrid industry

Consider 2016 a Ben & Jerry’s year for the microgrid industry. Microgrids expanded, not just in number, but in flavor. Plain vanilla microgrids gave way to a range of new kinds: virtual microgrids, blockchain microgrids, even flying microgrids, to name a few. Product differentiation reigned in 2016. But worldwide geographic expansion … [Read more...]

Medical Manufacturer Installs First Advanced Solar Plus Storage Microgrid in Costa Rica

solar plus storage

A Costa Rican medical manufacturer plans to install what’s being described as the first advanced solar plus storage microgrid in Central America. Establishment Labs will use the microgrid for critical back-up power, peak demand reduction and smoothing of solar variability. The microgrid also is designed to make the manufacturing plant more … [Read more...]

Energy Storage Costs Declining. But No One-Size Fits All

energy storage soft costs

Energy storage costs continue to decline, but with wide variations, depending on the battery technology and where and how it's used, according to new research by Lazard. Lazard also found solar generation costs declining at an even steeper rate. Solar and storage often are coupled in microgrids and nanogrids. “Our studies continue to … [Read more...]

SolarCity Completes Remote Microgrid 4,000 Miles off US West Coast

remote microgrid

A remote microgrid can play a crucial role on a far-flung island, as SolarCity shows today in unveiling a completed project 4,000 miles off the U.S. West Coast. The company installed a solar microgrid on the island of Ta’u in American Samoa. The microgrid’s “benefits are life changing for residents,” says Peter Rive, cofounder and chief … [Read more...]

Improving the Scenery: Why Duke’s Solar Microgrid is a Very Unusual Energy Project

solar microgrid

While many energy projects run into opposition for marring pristine vistas, Duke Energy last week proposed a solar microgrid that does the opposite. It improves the view. After installing the Mount Sterling solar microgrid, Duke will be able to take down miles of wire and poles running through a remote mountain region in North Carolina's … [Read more...]

U.S. Governors See Microgrids and Energy Storage as a Path to Energy Assurance

microgrids and energy storage

Microgrids and energy storage can help U.S. states assure energy supply during disasters, according to two papers recently issued by the National Governors Association (NGA). The papers emerged from an effort NGA undertook last year to identify best energy practices that have emerged from Superstorm Sandy. A six-state team studied lessons … [Read more...]