Let’s dive into our microgrid definition and a few examples/types of microgrids.
What is a Microgrid?
A microgrid is a localized, small-scale power grid with interconnected loads and distributed energy resources that can operate autonomously or collaboratively with other small or macro grid/broader utility power grids. Microgrid aims at providing backup power to supplement main power when there is high demand for power.
If the power grid is integrated with the main grid, then it is typically referred to as hybrid microgrid. Microgrid usage is also seen as dispersed, distributed or embedded energy production. Generators and renewable energy sources such as solar and wind energy are used to support microgrid.
Microgrid Definition and Examples
Microgrid comprises power generation, distribution, and voltage regulation. Their grid interface can characterize microgrids.
Types of Microgrids
Here are a few types of microgrid:
- Virtual Microgrids – They are coordinated in a way that they can be presented to the grid as a single controlled entity though they cover distributed energy resources (DER) at multiple sites.
- Remote microgrids– They help create energy access beyond the grid.
- Utility microgrid – These are a portion of the regulated grid.
- Customer or true microgrids – They are a self-governed and has a point of common coupling.
- Desalination Microgrids – They are used in the desalination process by desalting during solar hours and storing the water.
- Blockchain Microgrids- They allow customers to buy and sell electric power without electric utility involvement.
Benefits of Microgrid
Microgrids offer a number of different benefits for practical use:
- Microgrid offers power reliability, security and locally controlled quality for customers.
- It enhances the integration of renewable and distributed energy sources.
- Increases power resiliency because it is self-sufficient and if there is grid failure, it is quickly decoupled to ensure continuous power production from the local energy sources.
- It helps manage load optimally when there are limits in power supply.
- It can be adopted as a precautionary measure when there is a predictable risk of power loss for example if there is a forecasted heavy storm.
- It helps reduce carbon footprint and emission of greenhouse gases by maximizing the use of renewable sources of energy.
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