Micro grid solutions effectively increase the penetration of renewable energy
According to the government's smart grid master plan, the goal is to increase the percentage of renewable energy usage to 30% by 2030, which means there is much room to grow from now until 2030. Against this backdrop, Tatunghas been eager to develop micro grid in hope to support the government, industries, and society to increase the percentage of renewable energy adoption.
I.P. Chen, director at Tatung's Smart Grid BU, Sales Dept., System Business Section, stated that the foundation forTatung to develop micro grid is its 50 years of experience working with the Taiwan Power Company on electricity infrastructures. Tatung has a comprehensive product line for power generation, transmission, distribution, and usage. W.L. Chen added that Tatung not only has experience in developing power grids, but has also been engaged in other major software development and system integration projects for the Taiwan government on household registration, medical information, automated airport customs clearance systems, the management system for Taiwan's Hsuehshan Tunnel, and the electric railway in Hualien and Taitung. The firm has accumulated years of experience in information-communication technology, which is crucial to developing smart grid and micro grid systems.
I. P. Chen noted that Tatung has competitive advantages in micro grid industry, such as its cutting-edge energy and ICT technologies. In addition, the firm fully understands the thought of utilities: They seek stable, safe, and reliable products rather than innovative designs and technologies that are usually seen in the consumer electronics market. Utilities do not allow any lapse that requires a restart of the system. Compared to firms who have yet to work with power companies, Tatung understands what the utilities look for. I.P. Chen indicated that Tatung will not limit itself to Taiwan market as the firm plans to enter the international market. However, I.P. Chen added that the challenge of entering the international market is that in order to win the trust of international utilities, Tatung needs to grow the numbers of customers and installed equipment, and achieve successful commercial runs for the systems.
Therefore, Tatung has been cooperating with the government on projects, such as the establishment of micro gridon the Taiping Islands (or said Itu Aba Island) and setting up a smart micro grid demonstration site in low-carbon Pingtung Island. The firm hopes to gain more experience and recognition from these projects to advance into the international market.
The benefits of micro grid, according to I.P. Chen, can be actualized by combining energy management and energy storage systems with the grids. This can effectively lower Taiwan's reliance on fossil fuel and solve the problem of intermittent power supply from renewable energy. Whether or not the benefits can materialize relies heavily on the smart management system's ability to provide good load and generation forecastings enabling the making of an efficient schedule for the battery's charging and discharging. This will effectively increase the penetration of renewable energy being connected to the existing power grid.
W.L. Chen concluded that Taiwan cannot expand and establish thermal and nuclear power plants endlessly, so the government and industries have been searching for the ways to increase the penetration of renewable energy in the existing power grid. Micro grid, which adopts ICT technology as a tool is undoubtedly the best solution to reaching this goal of energy utilization.