3 Points that Help Microgrid Buyers Make Rational Decisions

Microgrid buyers need to be better educated about why the technology isn’t that complex, why they should consider resilience in addition to cost savings, and why they shouldn’t immediately rule out diesel, say industry members. According to Ryan Goodman, CEO and co-founder of Scale Microgrid Solutions, a common misunderstanding: “Microgrids … [Read more...]

Should You Hire a Consultant to Help Develop Your Microgrid?

Power generation is not the primary business of most potential microgrid buyers. They’re generally not familiar with the technical details related to on-grid and off-grid energy, solar panels, controls, artificial intelligence and battery storage. That's where a microgrid consultant may help, says Jon Erickson, senior project manager at POWER … [Read more...]

Depot-Based Electric Vehicles Like ‘Mobile Microgrids to Support the Grid’

Electric buses, delivery trucks and other fleet vehicles are like mobile microgrids that can help balance the grid, and their depots offer huge potential to reduce peak usage through demand response programs that also yield income. That’s the goal of CPower Energy Management, a distributed energy resource (DER) aggregator that recently … [Read more...]

International Partners Pursue AI-Based Microgrid Research at Saltwater Pumping Facility

An unusual group of partners from the Republic of Korea and Hawaii are conducting microgrid research at a saltwater pumping facility in Hawaii, with a goal of using artificial intelligence (AI) to help boost the efficiency of the existing power system by 30% when it is off-grid because of utility outages. The project, expected to be … [Read more...]

The Top Microgrid Misconceptions Debunked

Microgrids are too expensive, the renewable energy component is not dependable and microgrids are no better than backup generators. These are the top three microgrid misconceptions that prevent businesses from installing microgrids, say providers of the technology. In addition, customers mistakenly believe that the technology is immature and … [Read more...]

What FERC Order 2222-A Means for Microgrids and Energy Democracy

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Order No. 2222-A, released March 18, continues efforts by US regulators to remove barriers for aggregated distributed energy resources (DERs) in wholesale markets. And it may unlock new revenue streams for microgrids. That’s the word from Norman Bay, former chairman of FERC, who called the order … [Read more...]

California Pays DERs Too Little in Attempt to Curb Blackouts

A decision from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) that aims to reduce the potential for blackouts because of hot weather this summer falls short for distributed energy resources (DERs) in California, industry members said. The ruling, "Decision Directing Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Southern California Edison Company … [Read more...]

Minigrids Act as the Seed of Change in Cameroon

In the Central African country of Cameroon, electricity is scarce outside of major cities. But that may soon change because of a public-private partnership that has a set goal of installing 750 minigrids. The effort is about more than lighting up the 11,000 villages that lack power; the partners hope to foster long-term social, environmental … [Read more...]

How Behind the Meter Assets Can Help — or Hinder — Utility Energy Management in Texas

More and more, utilities are deploying behind the meter (BTM) assets — particularly energy storage and electric vehicles (EV) — to reduce their loads, balance their systems and provide resilience. In the wake of a February  outage, Portland General Electric said it has been testing projects that deploy customer sited storage to help boost … [Read more...]

Why and How to Bring Microgrids to Small Town America

This spring, the Poudre Valley Electric Association (PVREA), which provides power to northern Colorado, plans to test a microgrid for a small town that has experienced outages because of car accidents on curvy roads, extreme weather, and, in September, a fire that left the town without power for 52 hours. The microgrid, which will replace … [Read more...]