Microgrid Design and Implementation
The Town of Coventry, in response to the need for increased resilience to major storms and the need to be able to continuously operate critical infrastructure, is pursuing microgrid design and development that will interconnect nine town facilities including all schools used as refuges, a senior housing complex, the police and fire departments and the connected annex and radio tower.
The microgrid is being designed to be able to operate all critical elements of all buildings for an indefinite period in the event of an extended grid outage and to operate economically during normal grid operations.
The microgrid will add significant natural gas generating capacity with the capability to operate all critical infrastructure indefinitely in the event of an extended grid outage and new photovoltaic energy capacity combined with energy storage and will be interconnected to existing PV systems located at the middle school, fire department and police department. During normal operations, these systems will be operated to economically offset purchased utility energy and maximize net metering opportunities to reduce overall utility cost. The battery energy storage system allows advanced demand management strategies to further reduce normal operating costs. The combination of these capabilities is expected to reduce net utility energy purchase by up to 65%. During a grid outage, the installed capacity will support all critical infrastructure providing up to 50% of normal operating power.Energy System Features
- Low emissions natural gas fueled reciprocating engines combined integrated thermal energy recovery for high overall fuel utilization
- Zero emissions photovoltaic power
- Integrated battery energy storage used for demand management
- Ability to operate in island mode during grid outages
- Automatic interconnection of all facilities to share available generation capacity
- Ability to optimize interactions with the grid including balanced energy purchase and sale to minimize energy cost