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EV Chargers Plus Energy Storage Equals Multiple Benefits

EV chargers plus energy storage are expected to lower demand charges and avoid utility-funded infrastructure upgrades in a pilot program in Hawaii. In the pilot, a partnership among Hawaiian Electric (HECO), the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and Greenlots, a 50-kW fast charger for EVs is coupled with energy storage at a HECO site that … [Read more...]

In a Big Northwest Earthquake, Microgrids Can Prevent Outages

If a big earthquake strikes the Northwest, as predicted, microgrids can prevent outages, says Rhys Roth, director of the Center for Sustainable Infrastructure at Evergreen State College, which has released a report about how the Northwest can create an affordable, resilient and integrated energy system. "On the West Coast, … [Read more...]

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

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...]

Integrating Run-of-the-River Hydropower into a Microgrid for Reliability

The Idaho National Laboratory is studying integrating run-of-the-river hydropower into a microgrid to make the city of Idaho Falls' municipal power distribution more reliable. The $1 million, 2-year collaboration with the city of Idaho Falls was prompted by a December 2013 outage that left the city blacked out for hours in subzero … [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...]

Remote Microgrids Bring Electricity and Income to Rural Areas: Kilowatts for Humanity

Remote microgrids are bringing electricity and income to rural areas through Kilowatts for Humanity, a non-profit organization that began as research projects at Seattle University. In one project, for example, in Filibaba, Zambia, Kilowatts for Humanity built a 2-KW solar-powered microgrid that serves as an electricity kiosk. In addition to … [Read more...]

What’s Driving the Market for Onsite Energy ?

Even Rolls-Royce is getting into the onsite energy business, converting its on-highway diesel engines to generator sets. The company just released new generator sets from MTU Onsite Energy (a division of Rolls-Royce Power Systems) that feature Mercedes-Benz diesel engines. One of the driving forces behind the move into onsite energy is the … [Read more...]

Look Inside the Oncor Microgrid

We first reviewed the Oncor microgrid back in April. This three minute video takes you inside the Oncor microgrid.  Host David Chiesa, of S&C Electric, describes its state-of-the-art workings and how utilities like Oncor are using microgrids to keep the lights on during natural … [Read more...]

Jamestown, New York Leverages Existing Energy Assets for Community Microgrid

Jamestown, New York, offers a good example of a community microgrid design that begins by incorporating existing energy facilities, a strategy that can decrease project complexity and cost. Rather than building all new infrastructure, the city has proposed a microgrid that will use an existing natural gas-fired power plant and district energy … [Read more...]

Microgrid Basics for Community Leaders: A Primer on Advanced Microgrids

What are advanced microgrids, exactly, and why are they becoming so important to the electricity grid? Here is a primer excerpted from MicrogridKnowledge.com's new report, "Community Microgrids: A Guide for Mayors and City Leaders Seeking Clean, Reliable and Locally Controlled Energy." Microgrids have received heightened attention in recent … [Read more...]