By Editors of Power Engineering
Ameren Corporation has completed a utility-scale microgrid at its Technology Applications Center near the University of Illinois campus in Champaign.
The company said its new system, which combines natural gas, wind, solar and energy storage, is one of the few in the nation capable of serving paying customer loads on a utility distribution feeder.
The microgrid was built to test monitoring and controlling methods for aggregating various energy sources with advanced automation and battery storage, and can transition the power source for an entire distribution circuit from exclusively distributed generation sources to the traditional grid.
“Integrating microgrids onto our system can provide cleaner energy and a stronger, smarter grid capable of delivering the products and services to fit the needs of our future customers and the communities we serve,” said Warner Baxter, chairman, president and CEO of Ameren Corporation. “There is no better time than now to innovate and position Ameren for even better results in the years ahead.”
Components of the 1.5 MW microgrid include:
· Northern Power Systems Wind Turbine – 100 kilowatts
· Yingli Solar Array – 125 kilowatts
· Caterpillar Natural Gas Generator – 1,000 kilowatts
· S&C Electric Company Battery Storage – 250 kilowatts