Getting People’s Eyes & Hands on Microgrids with Exploration Station

Getting people's hands on microgrids

People who don't understand microgrids--or energy in general--can get their eyes and hands on microgrids with a portable Microgrid Exploration Station created by the Wisconsin Energy Institute. The exploration station is a great way of visualizing how microgrids operate--and also better understand how energy flows in general, says John Greenler, … [Read more...]

GE’s Smart Microgrids: Efficient and Reliable

Smart microgrids are reliable and efficient, and GE has the ability to leverage its experience and expertise to make them even more efficient,  says Jim Walsh, general manager of GE's new Automation & Controls solutions in this podcast interview. (See player above.) The company recently acquired Alstom's power and grid business, a move that … [Read more...]

Studies Examine the Value of Microgrids After Earthquakes in San Francisco

microgrids after earthquakes

The Rocky  Mountain Institute is studying the value of microgrids after earthquakes in San Francisco, focusing on creating a network of microgrids that would protect critical resources and serve as emergency centers. In this podcast interview (click on the player above), Koben Calhoun, a manager at RMI, and Leia Guccione, also a manager at RMI, … [Read more...]

Protecting Against Cyber Attacks on the Power Grid

Cyber Attacks on the Power Grid

The potential for cyber attacks on the power grid is very real, especially with the advent of electronic devices that send information about assets that supply energy to the grid. In fact, in the first half of 2015, the federal government responded to more than 100 cyber incidents that affected infrastructure in the US. And the energy sector had … [Read more...]

The Humble Ways Princeton University’s Microgrid is Green

Princeton University's microgrid

Princeton University's microgrid is green--but not in ways that are obvious. Yes, the university has solar--a field of 16,000 solar panels that produce 4.5 MW or 6 percent of the university’s power, says Ted Borer, energy plant manager. Click on the player above to learn more about the humble ways the microgrid is green. Princeton's … [Read more...]

Building-Level Microgrid Pays for Itself Through Utility Incentives

Building-Level Microgrid

GoElectric's building-level microgrid pays for itself in many instances, thanks to utility incentives for demand response programs. It's a microgrid at the building level that can connect any other energy resources on a customer's site--solar, geothermal, generators or other resources, says CEO Lisa Laughner in this podcast. (Click below to … [Read more...]

Dual Fuel Diesel Engines Help Keep the Lights On

Dual Fuel Diesel Engines

When high winds knock out wind turbines supplying power to the grid, dual fuel diesel engines serve as an important line of defense against blackouts. “Diesel generators can be structured to pick up in small areas, replacing wind energy,” said Jeff Powell, product manager for Fairbanks Morse Engine in this podcast. “For example, they can back up … [Read more...]

Turning Distributed Energy Resources into Grid Market Players in California

distributed energy resources

California is looking at a plan (DERP) to turn distributed energy resources into grid market players. What will this mean to microgrid developers? Is this a better approach to creating a distributed grid than New York state's REV? Alex Morris, director, policy and regulatory affairs for the California Energy Storage Alliance (CESA) answers these … [Read more...]

How the California Drought Affects Energy Storage and Microgrid Markets

California's water worries prompted the state to require utilities to acquire unprecedented amounts of energy storage. Similar worries could prompt other states to support solar and storage to help ease drought problems. And that will help boost the storage and microgrid markets, says Darren Hammell, co-founder and chief strategy officer for … [Read more...]

Podcast: Wesleyan University’s Microgrid Designed to Resist Outages

Wesleyan University's Microgrid

Wesleyan University's microgrid was the first project to receive funds from the state of Connecticut's microgrid pilot program, which aims to help utility customers harden their infrastructure. Wesleyan, which can generate 3.1 MW, wants to avoid power outages like the one it experienced in 2012 for 77 hours. The university can generate about 99 … [Read more...]