by Brianna Crandall — August 1, 2018 — Faith Technologies, an energy expert and national provider of electrical planning, engineering, design and installation, in partnership with its lean manufacturing group Excellerate Manufacturing, is unveiling a state-of-the-art, clean-energy mobile microgrid at this year’s EAA AirVenture Oshkosh in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
According to Faith Technologies, a microgrid provides efficiency, sustainability and resiliency, and is a cost-effective, eco-friendly way to produce and distribute energy.
MicrogridKnowledge.com defines a microgrid as a “self-contained power system, confined to a small geographic area. It will have one or more power plants, which are usually relatively small in size. It might also have some means to store energy, such as batteries.” (See more Microgrid Definitions from the Department of Energy.) Offering local control over energy supply, a microgrid offers emergency power when the electric grid fails, and can supply the larger grid with extra power when needed.
A microgrid is usually fueled by renewable energy (solar and wind) or combined heat and power (CHP), and is seen as more efficient since its energy is created close to where it is used. Microgrids are often used in self-contained areas such as college or corporate campuses, and in mission-critical facilities such as hospitals, data centers and government buildings. Faith Technologies recently unveiled one of the country’s most comprehensive microgrids at the Gordon Bubolz Nature Preserve in Appleton, Wisconsin, demonstrating their innovative energy capabilities.
According to Faith Technologies, a mobile microgrid is an independent, deployable power solution that can be used to supplement power sources in the event of a disruption to power. An advantage of a mobile microgrid is that it can be transported wherever it is needed because of its smaller size. If needed, several mobile microgrids can be tied together to create a larger power source.
As a follow-up to the advanced, stationary microgrid, Faith has launched a new mobile microgrid that will help serve mission-critical government buildings, military operations, telecommunications, off-the-grid locations, businesses affected by natural disasters or power outages, and any locations that can’t afford to be without power.
Mike Jansen, CEO of Faith Technologies, remarked:
We’re excited to continue the momentum within the energy industry by launching this mobile unit at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh. The mobile microgrid was developed to provide a cost-effective energy solution of the future. We know that energy independence is a critical need for businesses, hospitals and governmental agencies; and both our traditional microgrid and mobile microgrid are designed to fulfill that need.
As an example, Faith Technologies cites the current situation in Puerto Rico, where some have been without power for more than 300 days since Hurricane Maria. The company notes that one power outage can cost a business anywhere from $250,000 to $1 million. These disaster situations helped inform some of the design choices for the prototype created by Faith.
Excellerate’s goal is to make these units “configured to order,” meaning building one specifically created for any one business is relatively custom and quick. Additionally, through leveraging Faith’s capital and investment services, microgrids can be procured through Faith as an operational expense line item, in a way that not only reduces overall energy spend, but avoids lengthy capital expenditure processes.
The mobile microgrid’s integrated distributed energy resources (DERs) are managed by a control system designed and implemented by Faith Technologies, utilizing a Schneider Electric Automation Server controller. The mobile microgrid utilizes Schneider’s Conext XW+ solar hybrid inverter and MPPT charge controller system for grid-tie backup and off-grid solar solutions. The control system can autonomously configure the DERs into a range of different variations to produce the most resilient, efficient, clean, and cost-effective combination of energy resources available at any given time.
The advanced mobile microgrid incorporates 9 kW solar photovoltaic energy; 144 kWh sophisticated lithium-ion battery energy storage system; 10kW methanol reformer based, hydrogen fuel cell system by Altergy; industrial Ethernet switch for controls and remote connectivity by Westermo — all combined in a 20 x 8 ft. intermodal freight container.
For more information, visit the Faith Technologies website.