Microgrid Feasibility Study
San Diego, CA
October 2019 - February 2020
Illumina is a biotechnology company specializing in sequencing and array technologies for the analysis of genetic variation and biological function. A power outage could be detrimental to their facility’s operations. To prevent this, the firm is interested in islanding their existing electrical system. P2S performed a feasibility study to find options and costs for the following scenarios: (1) Be able to continue running the fuel cell and battery storage system during a grid outage and (2) Be able to island from the grid without sensing any interruption during an outage (requires load shedding).
This feasibility study involved field investigation and compilation of energy usage data, campus loads and current electric rates. Data was acquired by reviewing existing meter data for demand and capacity of onsite generation sources. A feasibility report was developed to summarize findings of existing conditions, our proposed evaluation and our recommendations to island the system in event of a power outage.
We developed a conceptual design of the proposed microgrid system design to efficiently utilize the available onsite generation and enable a DER system. We also recommended modifications and upgrades to improve system reliability and achieve grid resiliency while keeping the existing critical systems unaffected and minimized rewiring of the existing system. We evaluated the islanding scenario and isolated critical building loads and rewired to a dedicated feeder. We proposed feeder level shedding of branch breakers at the main switchgear to maintain power to the critical loads. We selected a Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories Power Max Microgrid system design based on the ease of integration of existing on-site generation facilities including Tesla Battery Storage system and existing SEL relays at the normal and emergency switchgear. Illumina's proposed microgrid system is capable of backing up the entire 9.5MW of campus backup load for a minimum period of 4 hours.