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Next Generation Microgrids - Is Camp Pendleton The Most Advanced in the World?

Microgrids have been on our radar at RealComm for several years now. We knew there was a viable relationship between Microgrids and smart buildings & campuses. After all, why wouldn’t forward-thinking companies want to take advantage of all the benefits of a Microgrid for their commercial and corporate real estate projects?

Brand new technologies often start out as a trend, the ‘next new thing’. There was speculation that the energy around microgrids was coming from a large influx of capital from state and local governments, as well as the utilities. Like many new ideas, microgrids rose in popularity and then suddenly disappeared. After the hype phase died down, the topic of microgrids did not disappear, but rather the noise went away and the serious got down to work.

One aspect that seemed ambiguous was defining what microgrids actually are; there are many different names and interpretations. Are they simply local co-generation systems, or a radical augmentation? In extreme cases, could they replace the current electric grid operated by the utilities?

There is a definite need for microgrids and they have a unique relationship with smart buildings if we really want to achieve the ultimate efficiency for the built environment.

Early this year, we were invited to tour the FractalGrid Demonstration project at Camp Pendleton. A very advanced project conceived over ten years ago, this project was completed in partnership with the private sector and the Navy. The goal was simple: to make sure Camp Pendleton would remain fully functional in the event of a utility grid interruption. The result was extraordinary, with multiple microgrids strategically arranged to follow a fractal or recursive pattern. Concentrated and PV solar, combined with an advanced flywheel storage system, utilization a state-of-the-art enterprise management platform based on the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile System ICBM (needed for almost instantaneous response), all tightly integrated into smart building automation systems.

The result was possibly the most advanced microgrid / smart building project in the world, which generated 140% of the required electricity for the project. Following is the Executive Overview of the project.

Executive Overview:

Achievements
The Camp Pendleton FractalGrid Demonstration (CPFD) Project provides uninterrupted power to loads within a subset of the 52 Area boundary. Upon demand, FractalGrid units are able to island themselves from parent grids, including the utility grid, without any disruption to the facility or adjacent communications and civil infrastructure services and subsequently grid-connect when needed. Utilizing innovative advanced energy storage that can handle up to six full charge/discharge cycles a day for up to 50,000 cycles (with a 25 yr. minimum warranty), essential loads are supported for a set minimum number of days utilizing renewable resources and traditional backup power systems. Critical loads remain on individual circuits with all other building loads sheddable via automation and user interaction (if required). Utility interoperability will be fully integrated, enabling local utilities to take advantage of local microgrids for demand management events as well as to call upon their excess energy to support other needs within the larger outside service area. The system optimizes energy, eliminates utility costs, provides uninterruptable power, and integrates renewable and legacy assets.

Systems Breakdown:

  • Parking Garage microgrid is comprised of a single 120kWh advanced energy storage unit.
  • P1069 Server/Communications Room Microgrid is roughly in the 2kW size and includes generation via solar panels and storage via batteries.
  • P1069 Building Microgrid utilizes over 500kW of renewable generation, 120kWh of advanced energy storage, 200kW of traditional backup power, and enhanced load shedding via a sophisticated C4I energy management platform (flex Power System™).
  • Area 52 Microgrid – An innovative aggregation of all the other microgrids plus an additional 600kWh (future) of energy storage and grid interoperability (OpenADR2.0B) to the flex Power System™ platform.
flex Power System Capabilities:

  • Energy Optimization and Load Management
  • Power Conditioning
  • Renewable and Advanced Energy Storage Integration
  • Demand Response
  • Peak Shaving/Load Shifting
  • Energy Market Interoperation
  • Islanding, critical load preservation during outages
  • Cyber Secure
  • Carbon Trading
  • Reduced Life Cycle Costs
  • Increased ROIs
This project, and many other world-class next generation smart building case studies, will be presented at IBcon on June 8-10 in San Antonio, TX.

Jim Young, Co-Founder & CEO, Realcomm

This Week’s Sponsor

MRI Software is a leading provider of real estate enterprise software applications and hosted solutions, serving the commercial and investment management industries, helping them improve their bottom line and maximize the returns on their diverse portfolios. Innovative products and a highly flexible platform have allowed MRI to remain at the forefront of the industry for over 40 years. Visit www.mrisoftware.com.

Realcomm News


SAVE THE DATE!
June 9-10, 2015 (Pre-con June 8)
Marriott Rivercenter | San Antonio, TX
www.realcomm.com

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UPCOMING REALCOMM WEBINARS

Controlling a Building from Your Phone – OCCUPANT EXPERIENCE Platforms Arrive - 2/28/2019

The initial focus in mobile technologies was on meeting room reservations; then came lighting, heating and cooling, then access control. Over the last 24 months it has become apparent that there are many more occupant experiences that can be delivered via mobile phone. Managing parking, reporting maintenance issues, ordering coffee, scheduling an exercise class, viewing security cameras, and other applications were quickly added to the list. With so many options and approaches available, what are the best strategies for occupant experience? Build versus buy, functionality selection, solution integration and ongoing support are just some of the topics to be addressed by the industries’ most respected professionals.

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Chuck Niswonger
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Chuck Niswonger has over 30 years of successful leadership experience in technology-related roles that range from operating his own consulting company (www.nicenets.com) to directing the IT strategy of a real estate investment management firm to manufacturing and technology-enabled education. Chuck has also been the chair of the Realcomm Investment Management (IM) Advisory Council for the last ten years, managing content selection for the conference educational sessions, IM forums, workshops and webinars.

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Matthew Lennan has been integrating IT and building system technologies for more than 30 years. He has developed and implemented computing infrastructures for global financial firms, major healthcare facilities, manufacturing, entertainment complexes and traditional smart buildings. Most recently, Matthew has been working in software development to refine the customer experience for smart buildings in Office, Retail and Residential environments. He is currently responsible for driving Innovation across Oxford Properties’ portfolio.

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Jared Summers Data, Analytics & Technology Manager Jared Summers is a motivated execution-oriented high performance individual who has extensive experience managing large-scale global programs. He brin
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Elizabeth Dukes Co-Founder & CMO Elizabeth Dukes is the Co-Founder and CMO of iOFFICE, the leading workforce-centric IWMS software and the first 100% SaaS platform designed for the Di
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