GE and PowerStream Inc., an energy portfolio company, have launched their first joint microgrid demonstration project, located at PowerStream’s headquarters in Vaughan, Ontario. The project will demonstrate how energy consumers and utilities may be able to generate and distribute their own energy using renewable energy resources to address the growing demand for safe, sustainable and reliable energy resources.
For the project, GE provided its Grid IQTM Microgrid Control System (MCS), as well as the engineering design services, to help PowerStream build a microgrid, which uses renewable energy resources (wind, solar), a natural-gas generator and energy storage devices (including GE’s Durathon Battery technology) to provide electricity for loads at its head office including lighting, air conditioning, refrigeration and electric vehicle charging. Using the MCS, PowerStream can determine when it is most economical to use the resources powering its microgrid or when they need to revert to using power from the provincial power grid.
“We are excited to have been selected by PowerStream to provide the MCS for this innovative project and we applaud their efforts to investigate new ways to distribute energy to their customers," said Juan Macias, general manager, grid automation, GE’s Digital Energy business. “The GE MCS will give PowerStream the ability to monitor, track and forecast load, generation and storage resources throughout the microgrid. By maximizing the use of distributed energy resources, PowerStream will be able to provide power in the most economical method possible.”
PowerStream’s microgrid demonstration project marks the next phase of the company’s efforts to support smart grid development at the provincial level and leverage innovative “smart” technologies in Ontario’s electricity sector.
"Microgrid technology is an innovative distributed power solution that will provide consumers with safe, sustainable and reliable energy choices for both generation and consumption," said Brian Bentz, president and CEO, PowerStream. “We are pleased with our choice of GE as a partner in this microgrid project.”