22 Oct '13, 11am

Big Corporations Embracing Microgrids: A Threat for Utilities?

The systems use computer software and remote measuring devices to control energy sources such as rooftop solar panels and natural gas-fueled power generators. They allow a home or business owner, a college systems engineer or a farmer on a mountainside to generate, distribute and regulate their locally produced power with an ease and sophistication that only utilities had a few years ago. Not much of a factor a decade ago, microgrids are expected to explode into a $40 billion-a-year global business by 2020, according to Navigant Research, a clean-technology data and consulting company. In the U.S., about 6 gigawatts of electricity -- enough to power as many as 4.8 million homes -- will flow through microgrids by 2020, Navigant said. Utility Leapfrog “Microgrids are going from evolutionary to revolutionary,” said Jon Creyts, a program director at the Rocky Mountain Institut...

Full article: http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2013...

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