The US Department of Energy (DOE) has announced $26 million in funding for initiatives that will demonstrate how a combination of solar, wind, energy storage, and other clean energy sources can reliably run the government’s electricity grid. The program is funded by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and is known as the Solar and Wind Grid Services and Reliability Demonstration Program. The program will provide funding for up to 10 projects on grid reliability and how a clean energy grid prevents blackouts by quickly identifying and correcting faults. The projects must have a minimum of 10 MW in capacity and utilise a combination of solar, wind, or other generation or storage technology.
According to the DOE, its grid investments throughout time have spurred the creation of new tools that grid operators can use to manage the rapidly expanding network. The electricity grid, which was originally designed to transport power from a few large fossil fuel power plants to homes and businesses, has now evolved to include a mix of traditional and renewable energy sources, with system stability as the primary focus. Stability can be accomplished by designing and testing tools and plant functions that allow the grid to remain operational during disruptions and restart if it goes down.
The demonstration projects will also provide data to demonstrate how President Biden’s objective of 100 per cent clean electricity by 2030 can be achieved while maintaining system resilience. Academic institutions, private enterprises, non-profits, state and municipal governments, tribal countries, and all diverse under-represented teams are urged to apply.
In June 2022, the DOE issued a request for information seeking public feedback on its $2.5 billion transmission lines programme in order to extend and strengthen America’s transmission lines and power grid. The administration just approved two solar projects that will feed 400 MW of battery energy storage in California.