• Sustainable Powering of Off-Grid Regions (SPORE) microgrid jointly developed by ENGIE and Schneider Electric to serve as demonstration site for clean energy

  • Asset installation includes Singapore’s tallest wind turbine, first hydrogen car refuelling station and innovative microgrid control solutions 
  • SEMAKAU ISLAND, SINGAPORE, 20 October 2017

    ENGIE, one of the world’s energy leaders, and Schneider Electric, leader in digital transformation of energy management and automation, have reached a first milestone of the power generation asset installation for the ‘Sustainable Powering of Off-Grid Regions’ (SPORE) microgrid. As Southeast Asia’s largest hybrid microgrid, it will serve as a test and demonstration site for power generation from local renewable energy sources, providing clean cooking solutions and green mobility to remote islands and villages across the region, powered by a multifluid system integrating renewable resources like wind, sun and could embrace biomass production. 

    Located on Semakau Island, SPORE microgrid houses Singapore’s tallest wind turbine, PV (photovoltaic) panels, battery storage and a hydrogen system for storage and fuelling a hydrogen car - a first in Singapore. The microgrid is part of the existing REIDS (Renewable Energy Integration Demonstrator in Singapore) initiative led by the Energy Research Institute at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and in collaboration with EDB (Singapore Economic Development Board) and NEA (National Environment Agency). 

    “This first phase of the power generation asset installation of the SPORE microgrid on Semakau Island is a significant step towards the full operation of the first multifluid, decentralized microgrid demonstration in the tropics. ENGIE’s goal is to improve livelihoods and support growth opportunities for businesses and communities especially those located on remote islands and in villages, through a cost-effective, safe and reliable decentralized power grid that can provide electricity using local renewable resources and reduce dependency on fossil fuels,” said Etienne Drouet, Director, ENGIE Lab Singapore. 

    The World Energy Outlook (WEO) estimated that 1.2 billion people, 16 percent of the global population, did not have access to electricity in 20161, with 95 percent living in countries within sub- Saharan Africa and developing Asia. 

    “In this context of global energy transition, global energy leader Schneider Electric and ENGIE have joined forces on Semakau Island to develop a common solution & showcase their capability of addressing the regional energy challenges,” said Jean Wild, Microgrid Program Manager, Schneider Electric. “Schneider Electric’s commitment to innovation and sustainability ensures that life is On everywhere for everyone and at every moment.” 

    The key technology innovations of the SPORE microgrid include: hydrogen technology, smart inverters, and microgrid management systems. 

    Professor Lam Khin Yong, NTU’s Acting Provost, Chief of Staff and Vice President for Research, said: “The deployment of Singapore’s first long span wind turbine is a big milestone in the nation’s commitment drive in developing clean energy technologies for the region. As a leading global university, NTU is proud to support Singapore’s efforts in meeting its sustainability objectives and pave the way towards a greener future.” 

    Photo: Print Screen of the presentation video of the SPORE microgrid (credits: Schneider Electric / ENGIE)
    Hydrogen technology 
    ENGIE’s hydrogen technology comprises a hydrogen power to power facility including a hydrogen electrolyser, storage and a fuel cell for conversion into electricity. A hydrogen vehicle and refuelling station complete the H2 chain. Hydrogen increases the flexibility of the microgrid as it can be stored easily and used for various ends such as electricity production, storage, gas, and green mobility. 

    Smart Inverters 

    Schneider Electric’s smart inverters use the concept of "Virtual synchronous generator" to address the common challenge of grid stability for off-grid microgrid, while achieving 100 % penetration of renewables. The smart inverters couple renewable energy resources like solar with power or energy storage devices to model the behaviour of an actual genset. This results in a scalable, plug-and-play solution which ensures better grid stability at higher renewable penetration and the ability to parallel with other smart inverters or normal gensets in a microgrid. 

    Microgrid management systems 

    The SPORE microgrid management system comprises: Power Management System (PMS) for shortterm and Energy Management System (EMS) for mid-term grid management: 
    • PMS- The PMS ensures the stability of the grid on real-time basis by balancing production, storage and consumption. This solution maximizes the renewable penetration and ensures an efficient control of an off-grid network.
    • EMS- The EMS works on a mid-term or monthly basis to forecast energy demand and production to provide a reliable and affordable access to energy. It also manages intermittent renewable energy production due to changing weather patterns as well as the multifluid configuration of the microgrid.

    ENGIE and Schneider Electric management systems provide an on-grid ready solution able to work alongside the national grid. The SPORE microgrid has also been designed to be scalable within an existing brownfield context or a greenfield environment such as isolated island villages. As most villages are powered by diesel generators, a scalable solution allows for a smooth transition from fossil fuel to renewable energy across the microgrid journey. 
    Source: Schneider Electric


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