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Home > News > Industry News > What is a microgrid?

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What is a microgrid?

  • Author:Jessica
  • Release on :2014-08-07

What is a microgrid?

A microgrid is a rapid deployment that provides power to a single community at a lower cost. The goal is to create small-scale renewable energy systems in different parts of the developing world to help reduce dependence on fossil energy in remote areas.

The following are three examples of successful microgrids:

Indian Demguha rice husk power generation

In 2007, Indian young entrepreneurs Gyanesh Pandey and Ratnesh Yadav used rice husks as a biomass feedstock to help Demgu, a remote agricultural town with a population of 2,000. Ha realized electrification.

The project received an appropriation of approximately US$12,000 from the Ministry of New Energy and Renewable Energy of India, and they raised $40,000 themselves to purchase gasifiers and transform them to convert rice husks into biomass fuels. They also purchased a 32 kW generator and built a transmission line covering the entire village. Less than five months after the project was run, the residents of Demguha not only had enough power to recharge their phones, but each household installed two energy-saving fluorescent lights that could be illuminated for six to eight hours a night.

  At first, no one believed that using chaff as a biomass feedstock to generate electricity was feasible, but when the business expanded to more than 300 villages, people began to agree with this business model.

As the cost of solar photovoltaic panels declines, the company is building solar microgrids and matching battery devices, and solar-biomass hybrid plants are also being tested to provide 24 hours of uninterrupted power.

Tokelau's photovoltaic model

Tokelau is considered to be the first country in the world to completely replace fossil fuels with renewable energy. Previously, like other island countries, Tokelau relied on diesel generators to provide electricity to 1,400 residents. In the first year of operation of the photovoltaic system, the 1 MW solar power system has already met approximately 93% of Tokelau's electricity needs. At present, Tokelau can save about $800,000 in fuel costs per year, which is enough to pay Tokelau’s microgrid project loan to the New Zealand government.

Tokelau plans to start producing coconut oil to drive the generator when there is insufficient sunshine. Tokelau’s energy minister, Foua Toloa, said that “Tokelau has already stockpiled a large amount of raw materials for the production of coconut oil”.

Innovative business of Sine Musa Abdul

The villagers of Sine Moussa Abdul had to travel for tens of kilometers and go to the neighboring villages to charge their mobile phones, and the electricity price was as high as $110 per kWh. In 2009, the village set up a microgrid, and electricity can be delivered directly to the home. Now, 900 local residents need to pay the electricity price of only $1.40 per unit. According to the power supply company, the electricity of the West Musa Abdul is from wind, solar and diesel.

This is just one of many projects to address energy issues in sub-Saharan Africa. Nearly 600 million people in the region face inadequate electricity supply, more than two-thirds of the total population. The Sine Musa Abdul project has attracted much attention because it provides a case for innovation in public-private partnerships.

The future and prospects of the microgrid are worth looking forward to, and demonstration projects are being promoted in different countries to determine the best policies and models.