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Microgrids

Commercial, Campus, and Community Microgrids

Commercial Campus Microgrid hero

Learn about our U.S. mobile microgrid tour, and find a live demonstration near you.

SEL powerMAX microgrid systems keep the lights on, seamlessly islanding your onsite generation sources and reconnecting with the bulk electric system as needed. They're efficient, reliable, and secure solutions for guaranteeing uninterrupted energy delivery to your facility and customers.

Our commercial-scale microgrid systems are ideal for applications such as college campuses, data centers, research facilities, hospitals, large commercial properties, and utility service areas where microgrids can be formed around distributed energy resources (DERs).

Key Benefits:

  • A resilient energy supply—Seamlessly island and operate independently when the bulk power grid goes down.
  • Energy efficiency—Integrate and control renewable energy generation. Optimize your microgrid for emissions and cost.
  • Energy storage management—Maximize renewable energy use, and reduce peak charges.

Verified Reliability

SEL owns and operates the largest for-lease controller hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) testing facility in North America. This facility contains a large number of Real Time Digital Simulator (RTDS) racks used exclusively for testing SEL protection and control systems under realistic conditions.

Every powerMAX commercial microgrid control system includes a factory acceptance test (FAT) in our testing labs—and you’re invited to participate. In addition to observing and verifying the full functionality of the system, you can request testing scenarios, ask questions, and work directly with our engineers to fully understand its operation.

Independent third-party evaluations—and performance in installations around the world—verify that SEL powerMAX microgrid systems are the world’s most advanced and reliable.

Adaptive Protection Ensures Safe Operation

Integrating DERs and novel topologies is even more challenging in microgrids than in conventional distribution systems. DERs in microgrids can modify fault currents, change fault current flow paths, result in bidirectional power flows, and affect protective device operations.

powerMAX microgrid controls seamlessly address these challenges with adaptive protection schemes that change relay settings in response to the system status and needs, ensuring that personnel and equipment are always protected, regardless of the network configuration.

Automatic separation systems in the powerMAX microgrid controls simplify the connection between your generation sources and the utility grid.

Pre-engineered functions allow our relays and controllers to detect an unstable or failing macrogrid and proactively island the microgrid power system to avoid blackouts, even when closely timed events occur. These systems identify and isolate dangerous open-circuit, shorted-circuit, and back-feed conditions, enabling a seamless transition to an island mode of operation.

Integration With ADMS/DERMS

See how SEL powerMAX microgrid control systems integrate with a distributed energy resource management system (DERMS) and advanced distribution management system (ADMS) to help optimize the operational state of the wider distribution grid.

Read the Tech Paper

Key Features of SEL Microgrid Controls

  • IEEE 1547 voltage and frequency ride-through compliance
  • Integration with protective relays
  • Automated generator and inverter interfaces
  • Point of common coupling (PCC) control methods that provide a seamless islanding transition and automatic resynchronization
  • Dispatch controls
  • Demand response
  • Software-defined networking (SDN) for best-in-class OT network security

The Microgrid Control System Leaders

Independent third-party evaluations—and performance in installations around the world—verify the effectiveness and reliability of SEL powerMAX microgrid systems.

At the Top of the Leaderboard

SEL is the top vendor of microgrid control systems in the Guidehouse Insights 2021 microgrid controls leaderboard report, which evaluates the strengths of the world’s 16 leading microgrid control system providers.

The Guidehouse Insights leaderboard report evaluates microgrid control vendors on 12 metrics—including islanding ability, controls functionality, pricing, geographic reach, and market staying power—to arrive at composite scores for strategy and execution.

Navigant Research (now Guidehouse Insights) also recognized SEL as the industry leader in its 2018 leaderboard report.

Guidehouse-2021 Leaderboard

Winning Performance

In 2017, SEL powerMAX was recognized as the top-performing control system at a microgrid symposium hosted by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and the MIT Lincoln Laboratory.

Later that year, a powerMAX microgrid control system won a rigorous, 21-week procurement competition held by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

SEL outperformed the competition by achieving economical operation and superior stability under a wide array of difficult operating conditions. A powerMAX microgrid control system is now installed at the NREL Energy Systems Integration Facility, where it is used to test emerging microgrid technologies.

Quality and Security You Can Rely On

All of our electronic devices are designed, tested, and manufactured in SEL-owned and -operated facilities in the United States.

The SEL Engineering Services team follows rigorous engineering procedures for design, development, testing, and commissioning of electric power systems. We continually identify, monitor, and improve best practices to ensure your satisfaction.

We practice secure supply chain management, including verified chains of custody, responsible sourcing, and keeping quantities of critical parts in reserve. Our quality management system is certified to ISO 9001 Quality Management System requirements.

Questions? Contact Us!

An SEL representative will follow up with you directly. We’re happy to answer all your questions and help you find the best solution for your needs.

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Unbeatable Support

When you choose SEL, you get more than products and services—you get a partnership. Our customer support teams are experts in power system products and applications, and they’re available for the entire life of your SEL solution.

Engineering Services project engineers are ready to assist you in various project stages from planning through final commissioning of the system. Afterward, you have access to technical support from SEL application engineers, at no charge, as long as SEL products remain in service.