ABB Shows Microgrid-Like Future with Solar Plane & Other Quick Microgrid News

April 22, 2016
An ABB-backed solar plane demonstrates a microgrid-like future…New entity to market microgrids in Mid-Atlantic…Power Analytics and Power Generation Services merge…World Bank-backed microgrid in Haiti…IDEA calls for Dubai conference papers
Microgrid-like future takes flight

Solar Impulse, an ABB-backed solar plane, took off from Hawaii this week to demonstrate what a microgrid-like future will look like.

The plane is attempting a 40,000-kilometer flight around the world using solar power and battery energy storage.

“We had to build an aircraft with an extremely efficient grid: from the electric motors to the batteries and the management system,” said Solar Impulse pilot and CEO, André Borschberg. “What we have is a system that captures its own energy, converts it into electricity, and stores it and manages its consumption in a sustainable way. This is exactly what ABB is doing on the ground with its distributed energy resources or microgrids.” Hawaii is a leader among all 50 states by pledging to power its islands with 100 percent renewable energy sources by 2045. ABB technology is already helping Hawaii with that goal as a part of Kauai island’s Battery Energy Storage System, which helps to maintain a stable power supply and provides instant backup power in the event of unplanned outages.

“One of our goals… is to demonstrate that you can separate economic growth from environmental impacts with help from smarter and more sustainable technologies,” said Greg Scheu, president, Americas region, ABB. “Renewable energy, microgrids, battery storage, higher efficiency standards – these all show that we can power the world without consuming the earth.”

Special Purpose Entity to market microgrids in MidAtlantic

The Blunt Group, DirectSun Solar and Grid Development Partners — BDG Renewable Energy Development — will deploy microgrids in Washington DC, Maryland, and Virginia (DMV) communities, part of what the company says is the first-of-its-kind Special Purpose Entity for the region. The SPE will market solar, energy storage and electric vehicle infrastructure in addition to microgrids.

BDG community microgrids are designed to strengthen the security, reliability and resiliency of the electric grid, and to maintain power and vital community services for DMV residents in the event of widespread outages.

The initiative also aims to implement alternative and renewable energy business models to increase community participation in the new energy economy and save consumers money by developing community energy cooperatives.

“This innovative partnership in collaboration with utilities, governments, and education administrations at all levels will focus on training the new energy workforce for sustainable higher paying jobs, creating new and advanced manufacturing jobs as well as sustainable employment by increasing trade with emerging markets in the Americas, Asia, and Africa,” said BG and GDP chairman Roger Blunt.


Causam Energy merges Power Analytics and Power Generation Services
Causam Energy has completed the merger of Power Analytics — a software platform for distributed energy resources, microgrid, and transactive energy customer engagement — and Power Generation Services (PoGens).

“The electric power grid is moving to a distributed architecture that emphasizes the role of microgrids, renewables and their integration and operation with the traditional grid, ” said Kevin Meagher, president of Power Analytics. “This merger provides additional capabilities that complement the Power Analytics’ Microgrid Power Management System (MPMS).”

PoGens provides strategic energy management services for commercial and industrial customers who own distributed energy resources (DERS) – distributed generation, combined heat and power, renewables, energy storage, fuel cells, or those who are registered demand response curtailment providers.

“This portfolio will enable DER owners to design and optimize their power systems, effectively and economically manage those power systems, and seamlessly participate in the regional energy markets,” said Meagher.


Princeton Power Systems to provide 24/7 light and energy storage in Haiti’s largest park 

Princeton Power Systems will supply core technology for the first project engineered by Geninov Group of Canada and funded by the World Bank to deploy microgrids in Haiti.

The Triumph Project will provide light and energy storage in Champ de Mars, Haiti’s largest park located in Port-au-Prince. The lithium-ion energy storage system is crafted by Home Control and Saft batteries under the leadership of Geninov, and contains Princeton Power Systems’ DRI-100 (100 kW) demand response inverter.

Haitians in the area will benefit from increased security, connectivity and recreation time thanks to the 24/7 lighting in the park.

The project is a collaborative effort between Geninov, Princeton Power Systems, Saft and Home Control for L’Electricity D’Haiti the grid authority. It serves as a pilot to validate alternative solutions to deliver much needed resources to Haitians.


IDEA Calls for Presentations for districtCOOLING2016 conference in Dubai

The International District Energy Association (IDEA) has opened the call for presentations for its annual districtCOOLING conference in Dubai. Experts in delivering district cooling technologies are encouraged to submit an abstract.

“District cooling is a key strategy coming out of the COP 21 Climate Agreement in Paris, especially for cities seeking to improve energy efficiency, reduce emissions, conserve water and support sustainable economic growth,” said Rob Thornton, president and CEO of IDEA. “This is a ‘must-attend’ event for anyone seeking to learn more about proven approaches to capture efficiency in community-scale energy and water use.”

The IDEA District Cooling Conference is November 13-16, 2016. The event will bring together experienced professionals from across the Gulf Region, North America, Europe and Asia to share innovations in design, development, operation and optimization. Participants will discuss issues such as market development, customer service, financing, emerging regulations and the energy/water nexus.

Wondering what’s ahead for microgrid-like technologies? Take the Microgrid Knowledge survey today, and we’ll deliver the survey results to your mailbox.

About the Author

Cara Goman

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