What is a Microgrid?
Self-supporting energy system
Above all, a microgrid is a self-supporting energy system. Microgrids exists of distributed energy sources like solar panels, wind turbines and batteries that produces its power. Modern microgrids also contain energy storage, mostly from batteries and are suitable for electric vehicle charging stations.
A simple distributed energy system, such as rooftop solar panels are not considered to be a microgrid. A key difference is that a microgrid will keep the power flowing when the central grid fails and a solar panel connection alone will not.
Microgrids are independent
Microgrids can disconnect from the central grid and operate independently. This so called island mode capability allows microgrids to supply power to their customers during an outage of the central power grid.
Microgrids are local
Microgrids generate and use local energy. This is different from large central grids which push electricity from power plants over long distances. A microgrid overcomes these forms of transmission and distribution inefficiency, by generating power close to those its users.
Current OS protocol
Microgrids designed and operating following the set of rules of Current OS do not need a central controller to manage the grid. In this case the intelligence exists in each device of the microgrid and behaves autonomously based on parameters settings as defined by the customers.
Want to learn more on Current OS please check the Current OS page on this website.
Microgrids are intelligent
Typical microgrid configurations need a controller, the central brain of the system, which manages energy sources, storage and loads. The controller function is to meet the energy goals established by the microgrid’s customers by increasing or decreasing generation or use of energy of the microgrid’s devices.
The electricity needs are increasing due to rapid growth of electrical vehicles (EV), digital and communications (IT), heating with heat pumps. In the same time more affordable local electrical resources such as photovoltaic (PV) and battery storage systems (BESS), combined here and there with public grids limitations, leads more and more to microgrid applications in buildings, infrastructure and industry.