Research Reports Microgrid Market 2014 – 2020

Microgrids form a part of the Distributed Energy Resources (DER) systems, which is basically a decentralized or district oriented energy. Energy is generated and stored through a range of devices connected by the DER. The microgrid is concerned with localized grouping of power production, storage and distribution. The loads are usually connected to a typical centralized grid, or a macrogrid. The microgrid’s point of common coupling can be disconnected to allow it to function autonomously. This means that a microgrid can be controlled remotely as though it were an individual unit while still being part of a larger grid.

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About the Microgrid Market

The primary purpose of a microgrid is to provide energy to localized distribution systems. The advantage that a microgrid adds to the energy system is that it can be operated either autonomously or non-autonomously, which means that a microgrid can not only work ceaselessly for a localized system, but can also supply power back to the macrogrid should it ever be interrupted. The microgrid can use the power generated locally for this purpose.

Microgrid Market Segmentation

The general categories in the microgrid market are product, application, and region. By product, the microgrid market is divided into:

  • Grid-tied/Grid-connected
  • Remote/Off-grid

A grid-tied microgrid can function either with or without a connection to the main grid. They can therefore work in both autonomous and dependent modes. On the other hand, remote grids are specifically designed to be used in areas that have a low tiered, or even absent, grid infrastructure.

The application segment of the microgrid market observes the following sub-segments:

  • Community and utility
  • Defense and military
  • Campus and institutions
  • Commercial and industrial
  • Remote islands

Microgrid Functionalities and Market Drivers

Some of the crucial aspects that enable a microgrid to function autonomously are:

  • Communication (sensors, smart meters, and IT communication)
  • Field components (energy storage, distributed generation, and grid components)
  • System (smart controller and power electronics)
  • Control (central management and control)
  • Supervisory

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Microgrids offer stable and consistent benefits to its investors and stakeholders. This creates a unique position for the microgrid market wherein it can help transition regions or even countries towards cleaner emissions. This shift towards greener methods is one of the larger driving forces in the global microgrid market, mostly due to the greater need of microgrids to employ a fully effective and cleaner DER. The other advantages or growth factors that the microgrid market possesses include the creation of new avenue of research and development, thereby creating more jobs. Microgrids can help in the electrification of emerging and remote locations as well. Due to their remote access capability, it can be used as a DER for a local system.

Other drivers for the microgrid market are the growing demand for power, added to which is the need for reliable, secure, and pollution free power. The advantage of being able to work independently due to energy storage devices makes them extremely useful in geographically remote locations and not be connected to a macrogrid.

The most common places of use for microgrids are in military bases, educational institutions, and commercial and industrial users that work in a remote location. All these locations face the problems of power outages, volatile costs, uneven supply of fossil fuels, and even energy theft, making the option of establishing a microgrid all the more appealing.

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Key Players

Most of the top companies in the global microgrid market are from North America and Europe. As more investments are seen in the Asia Pacific region, one can anticipate its microgrid market to improve substantially. Some of the top companies include Viridity Energy, Inc., Schneider Electric, Toshiba Corporation, and Honeywell International.

All in all, North America leads the microgrid market due to its heavy use in campuses and defense activities. Larger investments in Europe and Asia Pacific are set to make them the market drivers in the near future. Most countries are able to provide relaxed policies, making the use of microgrids a distinct possibility.

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