Microgrid Integration Without Costly Scope Gaps

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In the sixth and final article of this new special report series brought to you by Microgrid Knowledge and Siemens, we’re presenting the fifth and final step in our definitive guide for microgrid developers: smooth integration of the project without costly scope gaps. A case study is available exclusively in the full report.  

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Download the full report.

Throughout the commercial microgrid development process, limiting project complexity through operational bundling and effective communication with the customer, vendors and other stakeholders are keys to successful project development. Unfortunately, it’s easy to plant the seeds for scope gaps that will emerge at inopportune times, but following the steps found in the full report will help developers avoid the most common types of scope gaps.

To prevent communication scope gaps, developers should ensure a clear understanding of customer needs, attain the right outputs from studies that provide information vendors need, and simplify and streamline vendor management. To prevent technology integration scope gaps, they should choose vendors whose systems and products are technology agnostic and don’t rely on proprietary solutions.

Developers can make a series of choices throughout the steps of development to ensure smooth integration and a microgrid that delivers on a customer’s priorities.

  • Select a partner early in the process with a broad scope of knowledge to eliminate key unknowns and identify potential problem areas in the conceptual design phase before they become costly.
  • Partner with an adviser that can fill developer team knowledge gaps on near-term projects and help grow the developer team’s knowledge and capabilities for more self-sufficiency on future projects.
  • Minimize the number of vendors supplying the project for more effective communication and to avoid integration issues.
  • Create a microgrid system that is vendor agnostic and that doesn’t rely on proprietary communication protocols so that it will work with whatever technology and capability emerges in the future.
  • Ensure that all software, systems and devices can “talk to each other” for a smooth integration.
  • Future-ready the system so that it can be updated on an ongoing basis to meet new customer needs. A customer that uses a small natural gas generator on-site today might have a new sustainability standard tomorrow that prevents its ongoing use of gas-fired generation.

Siemens can leverage its comprehensive microgrid experience to help developers tackle challenges throughout the entire system and deliver efficient, resilient and sustainable commercial microgrids. Benefits Siemens brings to developers throughout the key steps of the process include:

  • Serving as a trusted adviser across key decisions to ensure it enables customer priorities.
  • Reducing the number of vendors and contracts needed to execute a project.
  • Defining the optimal microgrid design through simulation-based supply system analysis.
  • Ensuring that technical and economic requirements are met.
  • Assessing the scope and design of the microgrid to determine the appropriate system control.
  • Providing operational analysis so developers can continue to improve the performance of the microgrid on behalf of customers throughout the life of the system.

This concludes our special report series, “5 Steps to Develop Microgrids Easier, Faster and at Less Cost: The Definitive Guide for Microgrid Developers,” courtesy of Siemens. Be sure to download the full report to read an exclusive case study on the smooth integration of the Siemens Princeton Microgrid or read the previous articles in the series below:

Delivering on the Promise of Microgrids: A Guide for Microgrid Developers

Understanding Microgrid Project and Operational Requirements

The Importance of Microgrid Power Supply Studies

How to Make the Right Microgrid Procurement Decisions

How to Make Microgrid Hardware Choices: A Guide for Developers

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