UK industrial technology group Rolls-Royce Power Systems and automation technology group ABB are in a global partnership on microgrid technology with advanced automation.
Together, the two companies will offer an innovative, energy efficient microgrid solution for utilities, islands, as well as commercial and industrial establishments.
A microgrid is a small-scale electric grid that combines power from distributed energy generation sources such as combined heat and power plants, diesel- and gas-powered generators and renewable sources with batteries. The microgrid provides the overall control to coordinate these resources to meet the requirements of industrial, residential or consumer loads.
Reliable power supply – even during harsh weather conditions and times of peak consumption – is critical for economic growth. Renewable energy is a viable solution to support uninterrupted power as well as encourage clean energy use. This can be channelled through microgrids. Microgrids can function independently off-grid, connected to the main power grid, or in islanded mode.
Microgrid solutions that orchestrate energy storage, solar, wind and gas or diesel engines, benefit utilities, as well as industries and commercial sites that are looking for reliable as well as cost and carbon emission reduction. Microgrids enable resilient power supply even with high penetration of intermittent renewable-energy sources like wind and solar. Digital automation and control systems intelligently coordinate distributed energy resources and loads for the microgrid to function efficiently.
Rolls-Royce offers its Motoren- und Turbinen-Union (MTU) Onsite Energy brand power system solutions: from mission critical, standby and continuous power to combined generation of heat and power, and microgrids.
“Owing to the transformation towards decarbonisation, customers need to pursue sustainable power options that also deliver utmost profitability. For this, we rely primarily on microgrids, which are autonomous energy supply systems that are efficient, reliable and environmentally friendly,” says Rolls-Royce Power Systems CEO Andreas Schell.
He adds that combining Rolls-Royce’s integrated MTU diesel and gas generators, system technology and its control solutions, with ABB’s modular microgrid solution, control capability and remote service will offer customers the combined strengths of the two world leaders in technology.
“ABB Ability e-mesh can ensure a stable power grid, even with a high share of renewable energy from various sources, working smoothly together with already installed gas or diesel engines,” says ABB business unit power grid automation MD Massimo Danieli.
He notes that ABB has a vast number of microgrid installations globally and through its partnership with Rolls-Royce, the partnership will further support the growing interest in microgrid solutions globally.
The ABB Ability e-mesh solution will provide power generation asset owners a vertically integrated, unified view of its distributed energy resources and renewable-power generation that is quick to deploy and that reduce operational costs. Cloud operations, site and fleet optimisation, weather and load forecast, and machine learning algorithms offer infinite insights for decision-making, such as knowing where to increase investments on maintenance or how to increase revenue streams to operate assets more profitably.
Meanwhile, ABB will be exhibiting at the African Automation Fair in Johannesburg at the Ticketpro Dome on June 4 to 6.