French leading solar forecasting provider Reuniwatt and Danish global market leader in control solutions for decentralised power production have just signed a compatibility certificate for hybrid projects.

A huge perspective for industrial microgrid applications

Hybrid projects including a solar installation coupled with diesel generators are being increasingly used in remote locations for various purposes including rural electrification, mining and agriculture. In such isolated areas, PV presents serious advantages in comparison to other energy sources. Producing electricity from diesel in remote areas is known to be truly expensive, because of transportation costs, supply risks (loss, theft, geopolitical context) and the efficiency of the generators which often underperform.

The need for accurate short-term forecasts within hybrid systems

When coupling diesel with solar, the aim is to replace as much diesel energy as possible with solar energy, which comes at nearly zero operating costs. The technical challenge in combining those two energy sources stems from the volatility of the solar generation, and the fact that gensets are hardly flexible enough to compensate for this.

Using very short-term solar forecasting is the best solution to optimise PV consumption on hybrid systems. Reuniwatt has developed two ground imagers (the Sky InSight and the Sky Cam Vision) which gather images of the cloud ceiling and forecast irradiance and power in the next minutes. Both cameras are compatible with DEIF’s Automatic Sustainable Controller, the ASC which is a new, market leading solution for the industry. The ASC has been specifically designed to serve as a reliable, fully integrated and optimising link between sustainable power plants and genset power plants.

Thus, the forecasting is directly coupled to the existing spinning reserve routine and generates automated start/stop of the genset(s) accordingly.

“We are very happy to be compatible with DEIF’s ASC-4, which appears to us as a central solution to optimise hybrid microgrid applications while reducing maintenance costs and the LCOE for the end user” said Reuniwatt CEO and Founder Nicolas Schmutz.

“DEIF is glad to work with Reuniwatt, a leading short-term forecasting system provider of the industry. Using sky imagers and forecast data are crucial tools to determine and generate spinning reserve requirements” said Claes Sterregaard, DEIF’s Program Manager for Microgrids.

Both companies will be working together in upcoming hybrid projects.