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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Distributed Energy Resources On-Site Optimization for Commercial Buildings with Electric and Thermal Storage Technologies

  • Author(s): Stadler, Michael
  • et al.
Abstract

The addition of storage technologies such as flow batteries, conventional batteries, and heat storage can improve the economic as well as environmental attractiveness of on-site generation (e.g., PV, fuel cells, reciprocating engines or microturbines operating with or without CHP) and contribute to enhanced demand response. In order to examine the impact of storage technologies on demand response and carbon emissions, a microgrid's distributed energy resources (DER) adoption problem is formulated as a mixed-integer linear program that has the minimization of annual energy costs as its objective function. By implementing this approach in the General Algebraic Modeling System (GAMS), the problem is solved for a given test year at representative customer sites, such as schools and nursing homes, to obtain not only the level of technology investment, but also the optimal hourly operating schedules. This paper focuses on analysis of storage technologies in DER optimization on a building level, with example applications for commercial buildings. Preliminary analysis indicates that storage technologies respond effectively to time-varying electricity prices, i.e., by charging batteries during periods of low electricity prices and discharging them during peak hours. The results also indicate that storage technologies significantly alter the residual load profile, which can contribute to lower carbon emissions depending on the test site, its load profile, and its adopted DER technologies.

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