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a new sales force within
the company to go out and
engage with communities and
other potential end-users that
might want a microgrid. Feasel said while Schneider can
supply the equipment and
expertise, it is “working with
select partners that would
fnance and own the assets.”
Under that model the municipality would receive the
microgrid as a service. “They
wouldn’t have to put capital
up to do it,” said Feasel.
The company is work-
ing with Duke Energy on
a pilot project at its own
headquarters near Boston, MA. “We do believe that the non-reg-
ulated arms of utility holding companies make great partners
because they understand how to own and operate assets and, by
the way, they aren’t going out of business anytime soon.”
For Schneider’s microgrid, Duke Energy will fnance the proj-
ect and sell the power to Schneider through a PPA. Schneider
will not have to come up with any capital upfront but will use
its own equipment in the microgrid, which will also include a
400-k W photovoltaic system built and operated by REC Solar.
A portion of the PV will be on carports at the campus. Schnei-
der Electric’s microgrid controller Struxure Ware demand side
operation will optimize the photovoltaic energy, storage and the
facility’s existing natural gas generator during grid-connected
and islanded operation. It will also store up to 1 MWh of elec-
tricity using EcoBlade, the company’s energy storage system
powered by lithium-ion batteries.
Expect to continue to see announcements related to municipal
solar and microgrids in 2016 and beyond. à