When the Reason for Microgrids Comes in a Flash

reason for microgrids

Sometimes the reason for microgrids is so obvious it comes like a big blue flash in the sky. Such was the case in late December when Consolidated Edison’s system malfunctioned causing a gas flare that had some New Yorkers looking to the skies and wondering if space aliens had come to Queens. It took an announcement by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to … [Read more...]

Big Win for Local Energy: First Virtual Power Plant Snags Contract in US Wholesale Capacity Auction

virtual power plant

Sunrun last week became the first company to win a contract to supply capacity to a wholesale power market from a virtual power plant -- solar energy and storage aggregated from homes. The San Francisco, Calif. company, which sells solar power, battery storage and energy services to residential customers, competed head on with other … [Read more...]

Miramar Microgrid to Demonstrate One Solution to World’s Waste Problem

landfill gas

The much-watched microgrid at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar took another big step this week with an expansion that will demonstrate landfill gas as a reliable fuel for an islanded microgrid. Initially funded by $20 million from Congress, the San Diego, California microgrid is considered one of the most sophisticated under … [Read more...]

Puerto Rico’s Utility Calls for Making the Island into Eight Minigrids

minigrids

Puerto Rico’s utility is calling for segmenting the island's electrical grid into eight minigrids, myriad microgrids and installing more energy storage than is now in all 50 US states. The concept is outlined in a draft integrated resource plan (IRP) that the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) plans to finalize and submit to … [Read more...]

Microgrids Can Protect Public Health. So Why Aren’t We Using More that Way?

microgrids

Microgrids can protect public health during power outages by keeping the water clean, ensuring medical facilities are running, and keeping people cool during dangerous heat waves. But a number of challenges must be overcome, especially at the policy level, in order to realize these benefits. Both public-health and electricity industry … [Read more...]

Four Megatrends Changing Energy Decision-making & Opening the Door to Microgrids

energy-as-a-service

A new special report from Microgrid Knowledge and Schneider Electric  outlines the energy-as-a-service (EaaS) model and explains how it simplifies development and ownership of microgrids. This chapter focuses on trends that led to the rise of microgrids.  Until recently, the electric power industry saw little in the way of major innovation. … [Read more...]

Tesla, Fluence and Other Energy Storage System Integrators Playing Bigger Role on Green Grid

microgrid benefits

Energy storage system integrators play an increasingly important -- and shifting -- role as more renewable energy is added to the grid, according to a new Navigant Research report. Integrators design, build and operate large, grid-scale energy storage systems. Think Tesla and Fluence. In a recent interview with Microgrid Knowledge, Alex … [Read more...]

How to Keep Africa’s Minigrids from Becoming a Bridge to Nowhere

minigrids

A push is on to bring electricity to the nearly one billion people who lack it worldwide. But if you build it will they come? Apparently not, as some minigrid developers are finding in Sub-Saharan Africa. Electricity does little good for those who have nothing to plug in. And unfortunately that’s too often the case in remote areas with new … [Read more...]

School District and City to Reap Benefits of Utility-Owned Microgrid, Thanks to Group Effort

utility-owned microgrid

A group effort by Puget Sound Energy, the city of Tenino, Wash., a nonprofit organization, and others has yielded plans for a utility-owned microgrid that can island and provide power to the Tenino School District. Under the effort, called the Tenino Innovation and Education Through Renewables (TIER) project, numerous funders are backing a … [Read more...]

Storage is the Boss for Utility-Scale Microgrid Yielding 70% Renewables

energy storage

A utility-scale microgrid that uses energy storage has slashed the use of diesel fuel and allowed for up to 70 percent renewables to serve a Portuguese Island, Graciosa. The microgrid is made up of a 6-MW, 3.5-MWh battery system from Switzerland-based Leclanché, about 1.5 MW of wind energy, 3 MW of solar and an existing diesel system that … [Read more...]