Historically, central plants have been an integral part of the electric grid, in which large generating facilities are specifically located either close to fuel resources or otherwise located far from populated load centers [1]. These, in turn, supply the traditional transmission and distribution (T&D) grid that distributes bulk power to load centers and from there to end consumers.

These economies of scale began to fail in the late 1960s and, by the start of the 21st century, central plants could arguably no longer deliver competitively cheap and reliable electricity to more remote customers through the grid. Thus, the grid had become the main driver of remote customers’ power costs and power quality problems, which became more acute as digital equipment required extremely reliable electricity. Efficiency gains no longer come from increasing engineering complexity of large generators, but now from large scale mass production of smaller units located near sites of demand.





Microgrids can be constructed of a combination of resources [2], both loads and generations assets combined into a system which best meets the end consumers usage. Microgrids can also be of any size from kilowatts to megawatts, but usually have two defining characteristics, local control and full functionality both on and off grid.

Local control means the end consumer is empowered to operate the system to their best needs. You are no longer inseparable from the power quality and costs of a sole utility provider. You now have options to leverage differing costs of raw fuels and renewables to reduce your costs, green your business, and reduce your emissions as you see fit.

Full functionality both on and off grid also allows you to separate from the macrogrid during times of outage, if hazardous weather is expected, or if it makes good financial sense to operate standalone.This may also allow for the reduction or complete removal of standard backup power solutions like UPS’s as your entire facility is now backed up inherently. This means no lost costs or down time associated with a utility outage. Ultimate Reliability.





  1. “Distributed Generation—Overview”.  Wikipedia. Retrieved 26 October, 2015.
  2. About Microgrids“.  Microgrids at Berkeley Lab. Retrieved 25 October, 2015.

Microgrids in the News

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community microgridFreeport, a village in New York, has proposed a $35 million community microgrid to bring more reliable electricity to homes, businesses and critical services.
Author: admin
Posted: July 27, 2016, 9:59 pm
flying microgridABB's President and CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer describes the significance of Solar Impulse, a flying microgrid, completing its round-the-world journey using no fossil fuels. The solar-powered plane finished the trip July 23 in Abu Dhabi.
Author: admin
Posted: July 26, 2016, 5:40 pm
advanced microgridsSonoma farm creates advanced microgrid living lab...Musk unveils latest plan and it's not a hippy thing...White House offers loan guarantees for EV charging
Author: Elisa Wood
Posted: July 26, 2016, 11:56 am
Jeffrey Karp and Morgan Gerard of Sullivan and Worcester describe the value of PEER and how it can act as an incentive for microgrids, particularly in Washington, DC as it combats grid vulnerabilities.
Author: admin
Posted: July 25, 2016, 5:41 pm
microgrid projectCoastal communities in Hempstead, NY lost power for two weeks after Superstorm Sandy. The town has proposed a microgrid project to avoid a repeat disaster.
Author: admin
Posted: July 25, 2016, 12:00 pm