Interconnection

Connecting Renewable Energy to a Smarter Grid

There are many hurdles for connecting renewable energy projects to the existing electric power grid involving transmission lines, substations, regulatory processes and more. The good news is that both industry and government groups have invested in research on how to better connect renewable energy projects to the grid and how to construct a smart grid that can support a clean energy future.

Chapter 14: Interconnection

Interconnection - Getting Energy to Market

The electrical generation, transmission, and distribution system has been labeled the most complex machine ever created by humans. There are many rules and regulations to ensure that it runs reliably, and as a result the process for interconnecting your energy project with this system involves dealing with regulatory agencies at the state and regional level as well as utility personnel, engineering consultants, and lawyers with experience with interconnection contracts. It can take over a year to complete the required interconnection studies and can cost your project up into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. You will need to weigh the results of conversations and studies to determine if it is worth moving on to the next phase of studies or if the cost of interconnection will not allow your site to be profitable.

Ownership: 

Reactive Power Support

This is the production of reactive power to maintain stability on the transmission system. Power on the system comes in two main types: the first is the power that is actually delivered to end users, and the second is reactive power, which is power provided to the system to maintain the system, rather than for end-use consumption.

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