More Resilient Buildings and Communities

Microgrids

The future of clean energy

Microgrid Applications

Campuses

Communities and Affordable Housing

Multi-use Buildings

Healthcare

Critical Infrastructure

Military

What is a microgrid?

A microgrid consists of power generation and storage and is able to allow its loads to be grid-connected or ‘islanded’ from the grid during an outage to effectively independently function in an off-grid application. The energy independence that microgrids provide allows for more than just keeping the lights on – it’s an opportunity for businesses to protect their revenue, hospitals to continue the service of life-preserving electronics, critical infrastructure such as fire stations and police stations to serve their communities under any circumstances, vulnerable populations to have their refrigerated food and medicine protected during lengthy outage events, and much more.

Boulder Housing Partners building - microgrid resiliency project
- Tim Beal, Director of Sustainable Communities for Boulder Housing Partners
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“We had our first power outage on June 4th and it worked! The solar battery back-up system was up and running providing power during today’s outage; it was a seamless switchover.”

We also provided two EV chargers connected to the critical load panel in order to ensure ‘fuel’ for transportation if gas stations become inoperable, which is exactly what can happen in the event of long-term grid outages.

As was the case in Puerto Rico in 2017 in the aftermath of two extreme hurricanes, a power outage could mean more than simply losing your lights. Homes lose safe access to food and drinking water, as well as heating and cooling, and lives can senselessly be lost. Businesses lose profit and security, with losses compounding exponentially the longer the outage lasts.

Beyond weather, accidents and intentional attacks are becoming more and more frequent. In a study by Centrica Business Solutions, of 300 businesses surveyed across the US last year with every state represented, 92% have experienced energy failures over the past 12 months. These threats emphasize the need for investment in resilience and preparedness, rather than relief and repair. This project highlights that need, even in land-locked Colorado.

Boulder Housing Partners inverters & battery bank
Boulder Housing Partners inverters & battery bank
BHP - Kohler generator
Boulder Housing Partners building - microgrid resiliency project
Boulder Housing Partners - solar PV modules (Photo by Dennis Schroeder / NREL)
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Microgrid Spotlight
Ever wondered what would happen in the event of a power outage? Boulder Housing Partners doesn't have to. After Boulder experienced a disastrous flood in 2013, the city began taking on resilience projects and became one of the first 100 Resilient Cities. Projects like these strengthen the city's response to disturbances and changes while also prolonging social, economic, and environmental sustainability.

This system, which was the first resilience project in Boulder, provides backup power to critical loads at BHP’s headquarters. Included in the backup plan is the provision of a safe power command post for emergency services, such as fire and police. The power system consists of a 45-kilowatt hour battery bank, an 18-kilowatt, three-phase power inverter, a 6-kilowatt natural gas DC generator integrated with a 20-kilowatt solar array mounted on the roof.

When grid power is available, the solar array produces clean power in parallel with the grid, feeding power to the building and reducing BHP’s electric bill. During a grid outage, the system instantly takes over, powering circuits that were carefully selected and wired to a critical load panel.

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Building the future

Keeping the lights on

Independent Power Systems can develop your project from start to finish. We are consultants, developers, engineers, and contractors. We understand the complex financing structures, business models, and policy structures that influence feasibility so that the development phase of your project is as smooth as possible. We utilize robust, state-of-the-art technology because we prioritize building community resilience that is long-lasting and generates a high return.

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Sustainability

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Resilience

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Cost Reduction

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Economic Development

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Cost Savings

Building the Future

One System at a Time

Day in and day out we deliver the products and services we would want in our own homes to our clients and customers to help solve their energy challenges. We do this by choosing only the best, safest, and most long-lasting products available to design a system that will continue to perform year after year.