New Report Explores the Potential of Combining Solar and Storage in Microgrid Applications

Sept. 24, 2020
A new report from CleanSpark explores the evolution of the renewable energy landscape and the role of solar and storage microgrids.

Over the past two decades, the renewable energy industry has evolved, changed, and grown into a significant force shaping both the environment and the economy.  Solar and storage, in particular, has gained heightened attention from industries that value energy reliability.

Get the full report.

But, as a CleanSpark report reminds us, these “gains” have not been without their challenges.

In fact, CleanSpark contends that the solar energy market, in particular, now faces a new hurdles.

“Most notably, solar-only installations have seen a decline in ROI, as utility companies shift their peak rate schedules to when solar generation is tailing off for the day,” the report states.

That said, there may be some good news, as well, when it comes to solar and storage.

It can be combined, CleanSpark reminds us, “within a network of intelligent controls to provide reliable, affordable, and optimized power to energy consumers.”

And this ties directly into today’s microgrids and microgrid applications, which are both flexible and adaptive. The report explores in detail how the renewable energy landscape has evolved and how microgrid technology has a role in “the future of energy.”

The white paper focuses on combined solar and storage microgrids and the challenge of operating them in the most cost-effective way.

Although considerable value can be derived from charging storage from excess solar and then discharging during peak utility hours, CleanSpark notes that challenges remain.

The bottom line — according to Clean Spark … “is that energy storage can be a valuable addition to a renewable energy developer’s toolkit and provide significant value to end consumers, utilities, and everyone in between.” Photo: Shutterstock/By Love Silhouette

Some of the questions explored in the paper include:

  1. How much storage should be installed? Would it be beneficial to install more solar now that the excess generation can be used for more than rolling back the meter?
  2. Would it be valuable to sometimes charge the battery overnight during off-peak hours?
  3. How can one ensure enough available capacity to consistently drive down monthly peak demands during a string of cloudy days?

 Download the new report, “The Benefits of Combining Solar and Storage in Microgrid Applications,” courtesy of Clean Spark, to explore these questions and the next steps in microgrid and renewable energy innovation.

About the Author

Sarah Rubenoff

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