Microgrid News Highlights — December 28, 2016
(Jim Sulley/newscast via businesswire.com)
The electricity that feeds Borrego Springs, California, pulses through a single high-voltage power line that comes from San Diego. That San Diego Gas & Electric line climbs over a treacherous mountain range.In September 2013, a storm took out 19 SDG&E power poles, severing the town’s electrical umbilical cord. The utility turned to a large solar farm on the edge of town, whose panels can generate enough electricity to turn on the power in 26,000 homes. Work crews rerouted that power in 2013 to keep electricity flowing to Borrego Springs while the power lines were repaired. That was essentially the birth of the region’s microgrid. Getting all the power supplies to work together is the key to success.
Two new pilot projects, dubbed ‘E-Cloud’ seek to develop and optimize open microgrids in Belgium’s industrial zones. The “eco-zoning” will allow different companies in the same commercial park to invest together into distributed energy resources such as solar arrays and energy storage projects. The electricity can then be shared in an optimal way between buildings and the utility grid. The E-Cloud pilot project includes companies, universities, local agencies, power producers, and universities.
The Naval Post Graduate School’s Integrated Multi-Physics Renewable Energy Laboratory (IMPREL) in Monterey, California, recently implemented CALMAC‘s ice-based energy storage technology. The IMPREL microgrid project uses various forms of energy storage to store energy in the form it will be needed in, and a unique multi-physics approach to optimize the use of on-site sources of renewable energy. The multi-physics approach used by the IMPREL matches demand to the supply of electricity created by on-site photovoltaic panels and wind turbines.
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