The role of microgrids in accelerating energy access

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Conference Proceeding
IEEE PES Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Conference Europe, 2012
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This paper presents an approach that could be adopted as part of electrification strategies in developing countries. It makes use of microgrid designs which can be expanded and replicated in a modular fashion across wide geographic areas. The process of designing such a system is demonstrated with a case study in the state of Bihar in India. Results from the case study allow the costs of electrification by microgrids to be compared with those of extending the grid, and minimum distances from the grid where microgrid systems would be financially preferable to be determined. Taking into consideration the additional benefits offered by microgrid systems such as the ability to provide a highly reliable electricity supply, reduce transmission losses, expand the grid with smart features and facilitate the integration of renewable energies, it presents a convincing alternative to existing electrification strategies in developing countries. © 2012 IEEE.
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