This week, power management companies Eaton and Enel X announced plans for a second joint microgrid project in Puerto Rico. Both projects will reduce demand on regional energy infrastructure and enable Eaton to power its manufacturing plants with more renewables and boost energy resilience for its operations, said the companies in a press release.
The solar-plus-storage microgrid at the Eaton Las Piedras manufacturing facility will integrate nearly 5 MWac of solar PV and approximately 1.1 MW/2.2 MWh of battery storage into the facility’s onsite power generation systems. The project is the second microgrid at an Eaton manufacturing site on the island. The two systems combined will contribute 10 MWac of solar PV and 2.23 MW / 4.46 MWh of battery storage in Puerto Rico by 2022.
Enel X will build, own and operate the system on behalf of Eaton, financing it under the Energy-as-a-service (EaaS) model. The microgrid will use Enel X’s Distributed Energy Resources (DER) Optimization software, which Enel X says maximizes the value of the project across multiple applications, including on bill savings, incentive programs and grid services.
Eaton said it will lend its installation expertise and provide technologies for the microgrid system, including a microgrid controller and plant electrical distribution equipment.
In addition to increasing the facility’s resiliency, the solar-plus-storage system will enable Eaton to generate, store and consume renewable energy, and support the local grid by discharging renewable energy back to the grid, reducing emissions by limiting the need for carbon-intensive electricity during peak demand periods, it said.
The microgrid systems at the Las Piedras and Arecibo plants are designed to hurricane code in Puerto Rico and able to withstand Category 5 strength hurricane-force winds.
“The increasing frequency and impact of climate emergencies underscore the need for far more sustainable and resilient power,” said Brian Brickhouse, president of Eaton’s Electrical Sector, Americas region. “Around