A microgrid is a self-sustaining power grid within a localized boundary with distributed generation resources and local loads. The Microgrid can operate independent of the traditional utility macro grid as an island or it can be connected to the grid as single controllable entity in a bumpless manner. A microgrid is a small holistic energy system capable of balancing captive supply and demand resources to maintain stable service within a defined boundary. Generation and loads in a microgrid are usually interconnected at low voltage. From the point of view of the utility grid operator, a connected microgrid can be controlled as if it were a single entity.
Developing nations are investing heavily in microgrids as a viable energy strategy to bring reliable power to their developing communities. In India for instance in the wake of their massive 2012 blackout microgrids are a primary strategy for emerging new industrial cities and communities. Similar initiatives are underway in other Asian nations.
Microgrid capacity in the United States will be nearly 2 gigawatts by 2018 and is expected to grow at an astonishing high rate.
Microgrid implementations are driven by key drivers such as:
Microgrids can be categorized as:
Microgrid generation resources include green and clean forms of energy including renewables. These include fuel cells and gas micro turbines, wind, solar, batteries, small hydro or other energy sources or storage technologies.
OSI's solutions and platforms are ideal technologies which can be readily applied to operation, monitoring and control and optimization of the microgrid within the boundary of the microgrid itself as well as integrating the microgrid into the utility's operation. OSI's scalable applications and platforms can be offered as hosted services or locally installed and operated systems. OSI's monarch/SGP™ (Smart Grid Platform) is able to handle thousands of microgirds as a central platform or can be scaled to handle a single or multiple microgrids. In addition to monitoring and control OSI's advanced generation and network applications (GMS, DMS and EMS) can integrate the Microgrid as a resource into the utility's network. Our Distributed Energy Resource management applications can monitor, control and dispatch distributed generation and microgrids into the large utility portfolio of assets. Security of microgrid operation will be as important as the security related to other utility assets. OSI's secure software applications can bring the same level of robustness and security accustomed by large utility operators to the microgrid.