Message from the Founder

Dear Readers,

Change keeps accelerating in the energy world, especially for microgrids. We are now reviewing dozens of submissions to our annual conference and hoping you all can attend. The conference will be virtual again this year, making it easy to get to from anywhere in the world.  Sponsorship packages also are now available, which offers a powerful way to get in front of and be seen as a leader in the global microgrid community.

The articles in this month’s newsletter show how much has changed in the last couple of years. I used to discourage the use of mini-grids to power electric cooking, but the cost of solar has come down so dramatically, that it now makes economic sense to cook with pressure cookers and induction stoves in a mini-grid.  This has the potential to vastly increase mini-grid demands. It will also change the load shape, so additional modeling is necessary to understand the impacts on system and tariff design.  Done properly it could greatly improve the finances of mini-grid developers.

Another fascinating development is the adoption of remote microgrids as an alternative to grid extension. It has long been clear that in many parts of the developing world utilities should stop extending the grid, but now that is becoming true even in California.  Microgrids are now providing power that is more reliable and much more resilient than conventional power delivered over long distribution lines.  This was made even more obvious during the Texas outages and has prompted new U.S. legislation with a great acronym (MICROGRID).

We are also pleased to let you know that the HOMER team is growing and we are now hiring. Please see the post about positions currently open. We hope you will help us find great candidates.

Dr. Peter Lilienthal, Ph.D.
Global Microgrid Lead, UL Renewables
Founder, HOMER Energy by UL