Intelligent MicrogridsIntelligent Microgrids
Customized support for aging infrastructure.
UL CybersecurityManaging Cybersecurity Risks
Connectable devices cybersecurity-assessed in our own lab
EMCBEnergy Management Circuit Breaker
Shaping the future of energy management.
PEAK TransformerPEAK Transformer
Raising capacity for ever-rising electricity demands.
Microgrid Energy SystemsMicrogrid Energy Systems
Turning complex microgrids into turnkey solutions.
Energy Automation SystemsEnergy Automation Systems
Helping to make the electric grid smarter than ever.
Microgrid Energy Systems

Microgrid Energy Systems

What if the smartest grid of all was your own microgrid?

Eaton’s microgrid capabilities

Eaton’s microgid capabilities
Eaton’s microgrid energy solutions help meet demand-and keep power flowing despite power disruptions from natural disasters, accidental faults or intentional attack.

From the most advanced research centers to large-scale utilities, secure government campuses to rural communities far from the electrical grid, ensuring the reliable and efficient delivery of power is a constant challenge. Today, the stakes are higher than ever as the threat of disruptions mount and their consequences multiply. But at the same time, our ability to respond to power outages has never been better.

Microgrid energy systems are becoming an exciting, even fundamental way to leverage new technologies, harness new energy sources and address new government regulations. Eaton’s engineers see microgrids as the dawn of a transformative age—and the culmination of decades' worth of tireless research and development.

A perfect storm: Technology convergence, energy costs and climate change

Microgrids, in various forms, have been around for decades. But in recent years, multiple factors have converged to make microgrids increasingly viable and urgently necessary.

Every day, the world grows more technology-centric and more dependent upon electricity. The digital economy driven by vast data centers; growing (and sprawling) urban centers; the Internet of Things and interconnected machines—it all puts mounting demands on aging power grid, while the opportunity for cyber attack only increases.

With this demand for more power come rising energy prices. Municipalities, power companies and customers alike are looking for new energy management capabilities to offset costs though sophisticated demand response and peak shaving technologies—as well as the ability to tap into the greater availability of renewables and improved technologies to harness them.

Then, in 2012, Superstorm Sandy hit the northeastern United States leaving 7.9 million businesses and people across 15 states stranded for days, even weeks, without power. * The damage was so profound and unexpected its ripple effects can still be felt today.

To draw a stark parallel, it was if as all the diverse factors swirling around microgrids suddenly converged and hit critical mass as well. The result was new regulations, building codes and strategic, long-term planning focused on improving public and private energy resiliency. This means being able to function independently of the utility grid for extended periods of time in the face of natural disasters, man-made attacks or any form of power disruption.

What is a microgrid?
Microgrids are stand-alone electrical systems consisting of multiple generating sources and defined loads that can operate independently from the primary utility grid. They provide a reliable, efficient solution to unexpected power loss effectively balancing spikes in energy demand, optimizing energy usage for more reliable power, reducing operating costs and carbon emissions.

A long, running start to microgrid leadership

Over the past 100 years, Eaton has been on the forefront of solving nearly every challenge of electrical power management. So it’s little surprise that, in the early 2000s, Eaton engineers began exploring mobile power systems projects. From 2005 to 2013, mobile microgrid projects led to stationary microgrid demonstrations, and each one offered Eaton new insights and lessons learned about how to manage multiple generation sources—natural gas generators, solar, wind and battery storage—within seamless, islanded grids.

Then, in 2012, with its acquisition of Cooper Industries, Eaton’s microgrid engineers and technology researchers were able to leverage the company’s world-class power conversion products, power expertise and engineering services—as well as industry-leading utility distribution hardware new to the portfolio, including hardened utility automation products, transformers, reclosers, grid-tie componentry and more.

In 2013, Eaton was selected to help design an innovative Smart Grid for Portland General Electric in Salem, Oregon—one of the largest microgrid demonstrations ever. The project used multiple inverters coupled with lithium-ion batteries to provide 5 megawatts of energy storage in both grid-connected and islanded modes and demonstrated a unique capability to provide seamless islanding in the event of an unplanned utility outage.

For Eaton, microgrids were ready to go mainstream.

Making it all modular, adaptable and scalable

Demonstration projects are important. But today’s energy market requires solutions that are flexible enough to address a wide variety customer needs—and adapt as quickly as those needs change.

Eaton developed a modular Microgrid Energy System design using industry-leading substation hardware that could efficiently scale to meet a wide range of applications, and adapt to evolving generation and load assets. At its core is Eaton’s Power Xpert Energy Optimizer with advanced control algorithms that help maintain system stability, shave peak demand, shift load and manage black starts. Coupled with its Cooper Power series SMP family of controllers, servers and I/O modules and Yukon Visual T&D HMI solutions—all utility proven and cyber secure by design—Eaton is able to help maximize renewable energy contribution, provide utility demand response functionality and proactively manage generation assets to maximize microgrid performance.

Explore our products

System design and optimization
System design and optimization

Power System Automation, Power System Engineering, CYME Power Engineering Software

Project services
Project services

Turnkey supply/installation, Total project management, System design/integration/testing, Lifecycle services

Smart inverter
Smart inverter

1 MW - 2.25 MW, Ethernet interface to controller, Photovoltaic and energy storage integration

Supporting electrics
Supporting electrics

Switchgear, Switchboards/panel boards, Transformers, Regulators

Smart MV grid-tie connection
Smart MV grid-tie connection

Reclosers, Breakers, Dynamic synchronization

Utility automation
Utility automation

Hardened controllers and data concentrators, Substation Modernization Platform (SMP), Yukon visual T&D HMI, Protective relays

Low voltage load control
Low voltage load control

Smart LV breaker, Built-in communications

Turning complex microgrids into turnkey solutions

Today, Eaton is able to help customers achieve secure, reliable microgrid and energy storage systems in nearly any application—offering a complete turnkey solution of system design, installation, project management and everything in between. From feasibility studies, design and deployment to integration with existing generation assets and critical loads to project implementation, commissioning and system start-up, as well as ongoing maintenance.

This unique combination of electrical power expertise, utility-proved hardware and software, and unmatched engineering services are forever changing the way organizations and communities think about reliable, dependable and affordable power.

Learn more about Eaton’s Microgrid Energy Systems and see how Eaton innovation is energizing customers’ business across industries and around the world.

Additional resources


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