In an effort to help the Dutch Caribbean island of Aruba transition to renewable energy, ABB is providing an advanced microgrid to WEB Aruba N.V., the main power utility serving the island.
ABB says the microgrid will help WEB Aruba integrate solar and wind energy and meet Aruba’s growing demand for electricity.
Using 24-hour forecasts of both renewable output and system load, the system can help plan operations and adjust dispatch in real time to accommodate changes in renewable output, load or generation availability; this leads to a more automated grid, according to ABB.
In addition, the solution features an advanced control system with dynamic load shedding capability. When major system transients occur that the generation and storage are not able to accommodate, the system immediately calculates the minimum load shed required to stabilize frequency. It also ensures the distribution of load shed events so that no critical facilities are impacted, explains ABB.
The island has a land area of 288 square miles and a population of about 103,000 inhabitants. A popular tourism destination, Aruba has a peak demand of 134 MW, which is currently met by a mix of thermal, wind and solar photovoltaic generation. The utility has set a goal to generate half its annual average energy supplied from renewable energy sources and the other half from alternative fuels by 2020, supporting the government’s vision to become completely free of fossil fuels, says ABB.