5 Ways To Improve Microgrid Maintenance

If you’re reading this, you’re likely connected to an electrical grid—a network for delivering electricity for consumption. While some people have access to power grids, others live off the grid, meaning they either don’t utilize the electricity you’re using or do so through low energy storage and limited expansion.

An off-grid energy system costs less than an electrical grid system due to the differences in power use and maintenance. But there’s a third option. Electricity consumers can decide to stay on-grid and off-grid at the same time through the use of a microgrid. What exactly is a microgrid, and how is it maintained? Read on to discover the answers.

What Is A Microgrid?

A microgrid uses an off-grid system, an on-grid system, and a battery to connect users to electricity. The battery provides backup at night, during off-grid times, or during peak demand periods. It doesn’t matter if you’re connected to an off-grid or on-grid system; a microgrid functions to balance the two types.

Microgrids can generate power from either solar panels or wind turbines. If there’s a need for extra power, batteries come in handy. Sometimes, the power generated from turbines can be higher than the average power needed by consumers. Other times, the power can be lower. To stabilize, diesel or natural gas generators generate extra power for low power supply and extract the excess from high power use.

Microgrids make the generation of backup power more efficient. By reducing excess energy during peak periods, a microgrid can reduce the cost of electricity and prevent the failure of the utility grid. Microgrids are usually located closer to power loads, which are essential for minimizing the energy that may be lost during power distribution.

How To Improve Microgrid Maintenance

Microgrids can serve hospitals, schools, offices, and even communities. To maintain a microgrid, power plant software for asset management will be required to access the grid and reduce the number of visits to the grid site. Here are other ways to improve the maintenance of a microgrid:

  • Use Advanced Technology Batteries

One of the premium features of a microgrid is its ability to store energy. A microgrid uses batteries to store surplus energy during peak periods and channels the stored power for off-grid electricity use.

All microgrid batteries are said to be the best for your microgrid (an agelong strategy by marketers to get you to buy their products). However, if you want to choose the best battery for your microgrid’s maintenance, beware of those with outdated materials. They have a reduced life span and less-than-average performance. Rather than go for these unreliable batteries with manual assembly, choose the lead-acid ones.

  • Get Extra Capacity

As a rule of thumb, it’s advised that the capacity of your microgrid battery should be twice the needed capacity. This is because in cold conditions, low solar energy will be generated, and in hot conditions, the load might increase.

Also, make sure the battery usage doesn’t go below half its capacity for increased battery storage. Managing the battery this way will help increase the microgrid’s life span.

  • Reduce Load

The total load that a microgrid carries over a certain period is another way you might be doing the maintenance wrong. If you want your microgrid to perform efficiently for a long time, implore people to reduce their energy usage for load reduction.

They can do so through advanced insulation and by being energy-conscious. Switching off gadgets when not in use and reducing heating and cooling systems are just two of the measures users can take to minimize loads and keep the microgrid in check.

  • Turn To Alternating Current Systems

One way to increase efficiency in microgrids is by using alternating current (AC) coupled systems. Direct current (DC) coupled systems convert their power to AC when storing energy in a battery. This power is then restored to DC when the battery is used as a source of power.

The conversion causes wear and tear and reduces the battery capacity. Using AC coupled systems when maintaining your microgrid can help solve this problem.

  • Consider Smart Controls

Microgrids are often complicated since the processes involved are diverse. But the good news is that using artificial intelligence (AI) is a solution to the issue.

Smart microgrid controls can track system performance and make regular assessments to identity threats. This type of innovation improves the operational efficiency of the grid, therefore reducing its maintenance costs.

Last Word

It’s essential to maintain your microgrid regularly. Proper maintenance will help extend the life span of your microgrid, leading to more power supply and energy use at lower costs. The use of technology, such as artificial intelligence, can help you achieve optimal grid maintenance.

 

 

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