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The global microgrid market has been forecast to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17% over the next decade, rising from a value of $5 billion during 2012, to hit a market value of $27 billion by 2022.
Global installed capacity of microgrid has seen a staggering growth since 2011 and is forecast to grow at a CAGR of over 17% from 2012-2022, to attain a total installed capacity of over 15GW by 2022.
A microgrid is a localised grouping of electricity generation, energy storage, and loads that normally operate connected to a traditional centralised grid (macrogrid). This single point of common coupling with the macrogrid can be disconnected. The microgrid can then function autonomously.
Generation and loads in a microgrid are usually interconnected at low voltage. From the point of view of the grid operator, a connected microgrid can be controlled as if it was one entity. Microgrid generation resources can include fuel cells, wind, solar, or other energy sources.
The multiple dispersed generation sources and ability to isolate the microgrid from a larger network would provide highly reliable electric power. By product heat from generation sources such as microturbines could be used for local process heating or space heating, allowing flexible trade off between the needs for heat and electric power.
To provide tailored, efficient, and reliable energy services to the end users, microgrid employs and integrates a wide range of distributed energy technologies such as generation, storage and advanced controls, metering and communications into a controlled system that manages energy generation, transmission, distribution, and usage on a small scale as compared to the conventional macrogrid.
North America is still clearly the leader in terms of planned capacity, but the developing world remains the most promising long-term market. Microgrids still face significant barriers to wide scale adoption, however.
As of 2012, not a single national government has developed an integrated or comprehensive policy creating a viable, vibrant market for customer-driven microgrids. With the exception of Denmark, few other countries are even examining the complex policy issues involved when aggregating DERs not owned by utility companies on a broad scale.
For mroe information on the global microgrid market, see the latest research: Global Microgrid Market
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