Remote Microgrids Continue to be the Most Numerous Category of Microgrid Projects

April 8, 2014

Community/utility microgrids now lead the market in terms of total capacity, report concludes

Although most microgrids are technically retrofit projects, microgrids have begun to move into the mainstream.  Around the world, new vendors continue to enter this space with new projects and approaches.  These systems, which can operate in isolation from (or in the absence of) the wider power grid, are particularly well-suited for remote communities in the developing world, where regional and national power grids are often weak or nonexistent.  Click to tweet: According to a new tracker report from Navigant Research, there are now more than 388 remote microgrid projects in operation, under development, or proposed worldwide – almost as many as all other segments combined.

In terms of capacity, however, the market is now led by the community/utility segment, with a total capacity of 1,111 megawatts (MW) as of the first quarter of 2014, according to the report.

“While remote microgrids are proliferating rapidly, they tend to be quite small, often below 100 kilowatts in size,” says Peter Asmus, principal research analyst with Navigant Research.  “Community and utility microgrids, which include projects being developed by the grid operators themselves, can be as large as 60 or even 100 MW per system.”

Nearly half of the microgrid projects included in the report are located in North America, which remains the global leader in terms of total microgrid capacity.  The report shows a much more robust microgrid market than in 2009, when Navigant Research first began tracking the sector.  As of this update, Navigant Research has identified a total of 4,393 MW of total microgrid capacity throughout the world, up from 4,148 MW in the previous update, released in the fourth quarter of 2013.

The report, “Microgrid Deployment Tracker 2Q14”, tracks data on known grid-tied and remote microgrid projects in the proposal, planning, and deployed stages in six principal geographies, including details on the various technologies employed in individual projects.  The report covers six microgrid segments: commercial/industrial, community/utility, institutional/campus, military, remote systems, and direct current systems.  Specific information is provided on the capacity of the following generation assets: diesel, combined heat and power, solar PV, wind, and fuel cells.  The Tracker also details the rated capacity, duration, and types of energy storage for each project and breaks out data by world region and microgrid segment.  An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the Navigant Research website.

Contact: Richard Martin


* The information contained in this press release concerning the report, “Microgrid Deployment Tracker 2Q14,” is a summary and reflects Navigant Research’s current expectations based on market data and trend analysis. Market predictions and expectations are inherently uncertain and actual results may differ materially from those contained in this press release or the report. Please refer to the full report for a complete understanding of the assumptions underlying the report’s conclusions and the methodologies used to create the report. Neither Navigant Research nor Navigant undertakes any obligation to update any of the information contained in this press release or the report.

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