A nuclear microgrid? National lab sets out to test the idea

Microgrids use many kinds of energy, typically renewables, natural gas, diesel, fuel cells, batteries or combined heat and power. But we’ve yet to see a nuclear microgrid. Now the US’ top nuclear energy lab wants to change that. Idaho National Laboratory (INL), a Department of Energy (DOE) research facility, intends to build a prototype nuclear … [Read more...]

New York City energy veterans defend the home turf with microgrids

New York holds a special place in the hearts of microgridders because it was early to the game, rolling out a $40 million program to promote the technology eight years ago, back when the term microgrids was so new to the lexicon that spell-checkers were convinced you meant micrograms. Ultimately, the state program, known as NY Prize, was … [Read more...]

Microgrids: The brains behind electrification and an all-renewable grid

Microgrids are often characterized as sophisticated backup power — and they are. But that’s not all they are. And ignoring the full scope of their abilities short shrifts their value. Most ignored, I think, is their ability to balance renewable energy, an increasingly important issue as solar and wind detractors attempt to fault renewables … [Read more...]

What can bees teach us about electric reliability? 

If your power is out, especially for days, the arrival of a mobile microgrid in your community is a welcome sight. But mobile microgrids are rare. Most of us have to tough out a power outage, sometimes for days, weeks or months. So a partnership between two heavy hitters — Microsoft and Schneider Electric — is working with the nonprofit … [Read more...]

22 intriguing microgrid projects to watch in 2022

Last year one of the most read articles on Microgrid Knowledge was “21 Intriguing Microgrid Projects to Watch in 2021,” so this year we’re offering up a new list for 2022. The microgrid industry has been busy — there was no shortage of projects to choose from. In fact, our initial list netted twice what we needed. Since it’s 2022 not 2044, … [Read more...]

Top 10 most read microgrid articles for 2021

Analyzing which articles attract readership offers us valuable insight into market trends. What did the 10 most read microgrid articles of 2021 tell us? A lot of newcomers are exploring the topic and strong curiosity exists about project innovation and the role of microgrids during disasters. Readers are also keeping a careful eye on policy … [Read more...]

Why this could be a tough winter for the US electric grid

When the folks who run the grid start to issue warnings about electric reliability, we all best sit up and take notice. They are not doomsayers or advocates for specific technologies, but the technicians who run the regional transmission organizations. They are tasked with the engineering challenge of ensuring that electric supply always … [Read more...]

Going Big on Renewable Natural Gas for Microgrids

Renewable natural gas, or RNG, is emerging as a new frontier for microgrids and a way to resolve one of the industry’s core dilemmas. How can it assure the lights stay on without relying on fossil fuels?   Business models are just beginning to emerge for renewable fuel microgrids. And Texas-based Enchanted Rock is one of the companies early … [Read more...]

US House Passes Microgrid Tax Credit. All Eyes on the Senate

The microgrid tax credit cleared the US House of Representatives in a Friday morning vote approving President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better Act (H.R. 5376). The 30% tax credit would apply to microgrid controllers for projects that begin construction before Jan. 1, 2027. It is part of a roughly $2 trillion plan that provides an array of … [Read more...]

New Studies Point to Microgrids as ‘Once in a Generation Solution’

More microgrids mean more jobs. Americans across the political divide increasingly favor microgrids. And the technology opens a pathway for policymakers to implement an all-in-one climate solution. Those are the messages from three reports released in unison today that together make a case for government action to support microgrids, … [Read more...]