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Energy Globe Award

With more than 170 participating countries and over 1500 project submissions annually the Energy Globe Award is today's most prestigious environmental prize worldwide. It distinguishes projects regionally, nationally and globally that conserve resources such as energy or utilize renewable or emission-free sources. Award ceremonies are held all over the world. Prominent personalities as well as Energy Globe Ambassadors in 90 countries support the mission of Energy Globe. The activities of Energy Globe attract worldwide media attention - international TV stations report each year with approximately 1,000 hours of broadcasting time. The aim of the Energy Globe is to raise global attention on sustainable, everywhere applicable environmental solutions and to motivate people to also become active in this area.

National ENERGY GLOBE Award 2015

Submitted by: National Technical University of Athens
Micro grids using renewable energy sources

Modern society depends critically on a secure supply of energy. Increasing concerns for primary energy availability, environmental protection and ageing infrastructure of current transmission and distribution electrical networks are increasingly challenging security, reliability and quality of power supply. Very significant amounts of investment will be required to develop and renew these infrastructures, and the most efficient way to meet social demands and environmental concerns is to incorporate innovative solutions, technologies and grid architectures. The integration of Distributed Energy Resources (DER), mainly based on renewable energy sources, can contribute substantially to the achievement of the above goals without the need for excessive investments. Novel distribution networks structures include micro grids, i.e. distribution systems with DER (e.g. PV, micro turbines, fuel cells, etc.), storage devices (flywheels, energy capacitors, batteries) and flexible loads that can be operated in a non-autonomous way if interconnected to the grid or in an autonomous way if disconnected from the main grid. The operation of micro grids allows the full exploitation of DER, if managed and coordinated efficiently and can provide distinct benefits to the overall system performance. From the consumer point of view, micro grids provide electricity and thermal needs optimizing the use of the local resources and in addition enhance local reliability, reduce emissions by 25-55%, improve power quality by supporting voltage and reducing voltage dips (ideal voltage regulation improvement by 15-50%), and potentially lower costs of energy supply ranging from 25 to 35 €/MWh. From the utility point of view, micro grids reduce flows in transmission and distribution circuits with two important effects: Energy loss reduction of 20-75% and the ability to be a potential substitute for network assets. Micro grids can provide network support in times of stress by relieving congestions and aiding restoration after faults. In this project field tests on 6 test sites and 2 large laboratories have been undertaken aiming to examine the performance of various aspects of micro grid operation. The focus has been on technical feasibility rather than large scale demonstration to prove specific economic, environmental and social gains.



Sustainability needs to think long-term and global, act short-term and local.

Nikolaos Hatziargyriou

Jury-Rating
Fossil fuels are limited and no longer a way to meet our energy demands. Renewable energy is the key to a sustainable future. The integration of Distributed Energy Resources, mainly based on renewable energy sources, can contribute substantially to reduce the use of fossil fuels. The operation of micro grids allows the full exploitation of DER, if managed and coordinated efficiently and can provide distinct benefits to the overall system performance. This year´s National Winner of the Energy Globe Award in Greece conducts field tests aiming to examine the performance of various aspects of micro grid operation to encourage its future use. Congratulations to this initiative!