A new initiative wants to combine SHS and Mini-grids

A new project is investigating how solar home systems, mini-grids and a national electricity grid can support each other in an integrated system.

Imperial College London are leading a new project, Resilient Electricity Networks for a productive Grid Architecture (RENGA), which aims to understand how small scale generation, mini-grids and a large national/regional electricity grid can work together to improve access to electricity.

The RENGA wants to bridge these three systems by working on three specific areas:

  • Creating technologies that can connect SHS, mini-grids and a wider electricity grid in a safe and cost-effective way;
  • Developing strategies so that individual systems can operate reliably on their own or as part of an interconnected system;
  • Drafting a radically new roadmap for the expansion of the electrical power system that will guarantee security of supply and resiliency by using distributed energy resources with smart controls.

“We believe that community-driven developments are key to energy access but they also need to be future proof,” says Dr Philip Sandwell of the Department of Physics, “By anticipating the growth in demand and making good use of available resources an individual or community can optimise the use of clean energy systems that have the capacity to grow”.

Source: Imperial College London