2019 Installation Energy and Water Project of the Year – Advancing Microgrid Solutions

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ESTCP 2019 Project of the Year Award for Installation Energy and Water

The provision of secure, reliable and resilient energy and water is critical to ensuring mission execution at our military installations. Over the last 6-8 years, ESTCP has demonstrated several innovative technologies designed to improve energy security, increase back-up power reliability and support critical loads during extended electrical grid outages. One of the most promising technologies in this sector is microgrids. Fully-enabled microgrids offer many benefits over current back-up power solutions; however, there are many technical challenges that need to be overcome for DoD to realize the full benefits of this technology.

This year’s Installation Energy and Water award recipient was the Principal Investigator for three microgrid-related projects starting in 2013, and has recently been selected for another project to be kicked off early next year. The projects under his leadership have been expertly managed and have contributed significantly to the body of knowledge advancing DoD’s and industry’s understanding of microgrid design and operation. ESTCP is proud to present the Installation Energy and Water 2019 Project of the Year award to David Altman and his teams from Raytheon for their outstanding work on the following three projects advancing microgrid solutions on DoD installations: Zinc Bromide Flow Battery Installation for Islanding and Backup Power, Hybrid Microgrid with High Penetration Wind for Islanding and High Value, and Advanced Phasor-based Control of Energy Storage Microgrids.

David and his teams started their work in 2013 at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar where they demonstrated a building-level microgrid combining an existing solar photovoltaic array with a new zinc-bromide flow battery to provide back-up power to the Installation’s Department of Public Works facility. This project successfully demonstrated how a renewable-only backup power system can be controlled when both connected to and islanded from the local utility paving the way for integrating higher capacity renewable energy systems into DoD microgrids. This project was also the precursor to a large-scale microgrid recently completed at Miramar funded by OSD’s Energy Resilience Conservation Investment Program (ERCIP).

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David and his team then moved to the Otis Air National Guard Base at Joint Base Cape Cod to demonstrate a larger scale microgrid, similar in nature to the Miramar project but more complex in its capability to allow DoD assets to participate in energy markets. This project is demonstrating a cyber-secure microgrid that incorporates high penetration wind generation and energy storage to provide reliable power to critical loads while islanded from the commercial electric grid for up to five days. As well, the design will enable the 1.6 megawatt battery to generate revenue through participation in the regulation services market, thereby reducing the total cost of ownership of the microgrid.

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Continuing the work on energy security solutions, ESTCP funded Raytheon to perform a techno-economic analysis of large-scale energy storage integrated with microgrids. David’s innovative design using distributed energy storage combined with a control system using micro phasor measurement units, enabled the microgrid to reduce the number of diesel generators and uninterruptable power supplies needed to achieve the same or better back-up power reliability to the installations critical loads. At some of the installations modeled, this solution reduced the operations and maintenance costs for the back-up power systems by up to 50%. Based on the results from this analysis, Raytheon was selected to proceed to Phase 2 of this demonstration to perform real-time simulations of their design in the lab before deploying the system in the field.

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Over the course of these three projects, David and his team advanced DoD and industry’s understanding of microgrid controls, pushed the envelope of integrating renewable energy, demonstrated a solution for cybersecure interaction with energy markets, and imagined a new way to implement energy storage to increase energy security and reduce operating costs. For additional details on the demonstration and results, please check out the project specific webpage for each of these projects. The Final Reports for projects numbered EW19-5163 and EW-201606 projects will be posted online after the completion of the project.

Project Team:

  • David Altman - Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems
  • Ryan Faries - Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems
  • Scott Baron - Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems
  • Jimmy Cail - Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems
  • John Butler - Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems
  • Jason Hoffman - Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems
  • Patrick Day - Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems
EW ESTCP POY19 award

Photo by Ben Zweig

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