IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2015 - 56

ToPo achieved 90% restoration in six days and 95% restoration in
ten days, whereas TEPCO achieved 90% restoration in four days
and 95% restoration in seven days.

electrical equipment at some production facilities prevented
acceptance of available or restored electricity megagrid service. Installing backup systems requires a strong economic
justification.
The Council on Competitiveness-Nippon, a group of
top Japanese companies, established a research project on
the "resilient economy" in 2011 and 2012. The necessity of
back-up systems, including distributed energy resources, to
improve resilience of energy supply was stated in the final
report. Insightfully, it also pointed out that technology to shut
down unimportant loads should be developed, an endorsement for HeQ. The sharing of electricity among consumers
at the distribution level was also mentioned. Medical care
is one of the most important citizen services when disaster
strikes. Emergency services learned that loss or shortage of
electricity, fuel, or water is critical to their mission. They
discussed and revised design guidelines to improve resilience. Increased penetration of back-up systems is expected,
although many of the medical facilities are privately owned
in Japan and face tight financial constraints.
Japan took the initiative among international standards
activities on electricity resilience. The Microgrids for Disaster Preparedness and Recovery Project was proposed by Japanese experts and was established in the Market Strategy Board

Microgrid

of the International Electrotechnical Committee in 2012. The
project covered consumers' electricity supply continuity
and resilience improvement, especially on the demand side.
Starting last year, the discussion is being continued in Working Group 1 (City Service Continuity), System Evaluation
Group 1 (SEG1: Smart Cities), with Hirohisa Aki as leader.
The project proposed the concept of an electricity continuity
plan and system and ranking and classifying the importance
of loads. Backup systems, such as distributed generators or
batteries, are needed to continue electricity supply in case of
emergency; however, even if a backup system is installed,
electricity supply is usually limited when a blackout occurs,
and outage duration is uncertain. The limited electricity available should be supplied to high-priority loads. The process
of developing plans and classification make the investment
cost and benefit, i.e., resilience improvement, clear, encouraging investment in backup systems and improved demand-side
resilience.
Since the GEJE, resilience is becoming an important
value in Japan, and companies are promoting the resilience
characteristics of their products. Energy saving and cost
reduction are always important, but now "business continuity" has become an additional mantra. Some of the companies introduced in this article as early microgrid leaders are

Saiwaityou Natural
Gas Facility

Sendai Port Natural
Gas Facility
Sendai Port
Natural
Gas Facility

figure 14. Sendai's gas network and facility damage. (Source: Alexis Kwasinski, Background map: © OpenStreetMap
contributors, use is permitted under an Open Database License as indicated in http://www.openstreetmap.org.)
56

ieee power & energy magazine

may/june 2015


http://www.openstreetmap.org

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