5 Advantages of Using a Microgrid

Microgrids provide a way to get energy without having to always rely on the power company. These systems are now providing energy for communities all over the world. Here are five of the top advantages of using a microgrid.

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Image: https://www.schneider-electric.us/en/work/solutions/microgrids/
  1. Microgrids Provide Electrical Network Reliability and Independence

The core purpose behind a microgrid is to provide energy without having to be connected to the main utility grid. Most people and businesses rely on their local power company for their energy needs. When there’s a disruption in electricity, anyone reliant on the utility company will be out of power.

Some people use backup generators for energy when something goes wrong. This is a fine short-term fix, but this can be energy intensive. A microgrid, however, can seamlessly power a localized network when the power is cut off from the utility company. This can be accomplished through a variety of battery storage systems. With a microgrid solution from a provider like Schneider Electric, it’s possible to achieve continual electrical reliability and independence.

  1. Microgrids Thrive on Renewable Resources

One of the most compelling advantages of using a microgrid is the fact they can be powered largely by renewable resources. Solar panels, as well as wind and water turbines, can be implemented to charge batteries. These batteries can step in for traditional power sources when needed. Alternatively, it’s possible to directly use the microgrid’s energy as an ongoing supplemental—or even primary—power source.

  1. You Can Sell Excess Energy When Utilizing a Microgrid

Microgrids function by storing energy in batteries, and then using that power when necessary. Sometimes, this means the grid will reach a point where it’s nearing battery capacity. In this case, it’s possible to sell that excess energy back to the utility company or others who might need it.

If you don’t want to sell the energy, then it makes sense to switch over to the microgrid’s power when nearing capacity. Doing this can boost overall efficiency of the community or enterprise connected to the microgrid.

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Image: https://www.schneider-electric.us/en/work/solutions/microgrids/
  1. Microgrids Are Sustainable and Cost-Effective

Sustainability and cost-effectiveness are additional benefits of implementing a microgrid system. Over time, having a microgrid can make a big impact on both of these fronts. As already stated, it’s possible to charge a microgrid through renewable energy sources. Being able to seamlessly incorporate renewable energy into a grid’s power supply can vastly improve overall sustainability.

Furthermore, it makes economic sense to implement microgrids in many situations. Of course, the ability to sell energy can help pay for the initial investment in the microgrid system. But microgrids also lessen reliance on the utility company. Not having to always get power through the main provider will lower energy costs for the microgrid community. There’s also no telling how energy prices might fluctuate. With a sustainable microgrid in place, it’s possible to hedge against rising costs.

  1. There Are Many Beneficial Applications for Microgrids

While installing a microgrid is a smart option in many cases, there are also times when it’s practically essential. These are a few scenarios where installing a microgrid is a no-brainer:

  • Areas that don’t have easy access to the main grid can implement microgrids instead. Islands or other remote locations might not be able to get power in an efficient way without a microgrid.
  • High-security grids that absolutely can’t lose power. Having a microgrid in place will guarantee there won’t be a lapse if external power is cut off for any reason.
  • Communities that don’t want to rely on a power company for their energy can now make that a reality. By investing in microgrid technology, it’s possible to sharply reduce power dependence.

There are lots of reasons why it makes sense to install a microgrid. Adopting this type of power solution can have a huge positive impact on communities and enterprises.