Efficient Plant April 2018 - 38

feature | solution focus
costs before a shovel hits the dirt. These days, though,
it is possible-and much more cost effective-to integrate microgrid solutions within the framework of
existing facility infrastructure. Additionally, innovative payment models such as Microgrid-as-a-Service
(MaaS) can help finance microgrid projects with zero
upfront cost.

DEFINING A MICROGRID
The two key microgrid definitions include:
 A system of DER and groups of loads that can
operate within a definable electrical boundary.
 DER that can be an "island," i.e., separate from
the main power grid.

To unleash the advantages of DER, it is often necessary for managers to incorporate non-transmission
alternatives (NTA) to upgrade existing transmission
and/or electrical systems.

ENSURING A GOOD FIT
Microgrids have historically been best-suited for
facilities in the size range of 20 to 100 MW. The types
of sites that fall into this range include critical-power
operations, universities, commercial buildings, and
military bases. The advent of onsite power-controlcenter hardware, however, has made microgrids more
modular, leading to the feasibility of deploying these
solutions for small- to medium-sized facilities in the

+

CRUCIAL IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES
Although the market for
distributed-energy resources
(DER) and microgrids is growing
rapidly, general knowledge about
the intricacies of these solutions
is minimal in comparison
to the centralized grid. Yet,
decentralization of the grid is
a major factor in optimizing
energy-usage strategies within
the new energy landscape.
Unfortunately, because
widespread understanding of
the new technology still seems
to be lacking, there's a general
assumption that microgrids are
complex systems that require
customized high-end design
expertise to implement-and
even higher levels of project
management and financing.
The reality, though, is that
microgrids are becoming easier
to integrate within existing
energy infrastructure, while
allowing operations to become
more efficient, sustainable, and

38

| EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

resilient. Furthermore, due to
the rise of microgrids and the
specialization of products, the
advantages this technology offers
are available to a larger pool of
facilities and energy managers
than in the past.
KEY CONSIDERATIONS

When considering microgrids and
DER deployments, end users and
their engineering consultants,
project-management teams, and/
or other service providers should
keep the following issues in mind:
 From a technical standpoint,
how might DER combine with the
end user's existing energy infrastructure? Or how should the site
incorporate alternative energy
within the framework of distributed-generation technologies?
 From a financial standpoint, what
will it cost the end user to add the
necessary technologies to install
solar power, energy storage, and/
or advanced microgrid controls?

How much will it cost upfront, and
what business models can help
offset that cost? Crucially, how
much will it save in the long run?
 From a regulatory/compliance
standpoint, what legal hurdles
might the end user face by using
the island approach to separate
from the larger electric grid?
An end user will naturally be
narrowly focused on the financial
perspective, considering how a
microgrid project will improve
its bottom line through energy
management, renewable-energy
integration, and minimized
downtime and outages. To
make fully informed decisions,
however, it's also important
for end users, along with other
parties in possible projects, to
be knowledgeable about the full
portfolio of distributed-energy
technologies and how to leverage
specific tools or strategies
for their respective energy
situations.

APRIL 2018


http://www.EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Efficient Plant April 2018

Editorial
Implementations
What's Wrong With My Bolts?
Understand Vertical Motor Bearings
Bourbon Boom Drives Distillery Expansion
Lubricant Myths That Can Cost You
IIoT
SAP: When To Update SAP Master Data
Give Your Chain A 'Hand'
Why Do Hackers Hack?
Why Compressor Size Matters
Equipment-Rental Considerations
On The Floor
Microgrids Are On The Rise
Solution Focus
Products
Index
Showcase
Seeking Reliability
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Cover1
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Cover2
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 1
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 2
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 3
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 4
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 5
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Editorial
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 7
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Implementations
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 9
Efficient Plant April 2018 - What's Wrong With My Bolts?
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 11
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 12
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 13
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 14
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 15
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Understand Vertical Motor Bearings
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 19
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 20
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Bourbon Boom Drives Distillery Expansion
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 22
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 17
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 18
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 19
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 20
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Bourbon Boom Drives Distillery Expansion
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 22
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 23
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 24
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Lubricant Myths That Can Cost You
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 26
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 27
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 28
Efficient Plant April 2018 - IIoT
Efficient Plant April 2018 - SAP: When To Update SAP Master Data
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Give Your Chain A 'Hand'
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Why Do Hackers Hack?
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Why Compressor Size Matters
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Equipment-Rental Considerations
Efficient Plant April 2018 - On The Floor
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 36
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Solution Focus
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 38
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 39
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 40
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Products
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 42
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 43
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 44
Efficient Plant April 2018 - 45
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Index
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Showcase
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Seeking Reliability
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Cover3
Efficient Plant April 2018 - Cover4
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