World Forum to Examine Latest Microgrid Advances and Opportunities

Microgrid World Forum 2013, March 12-14 in Irvine, CA will examine the potential role of microgrids to enhance electric power reliability, quality, surety, and independence. Focus includes latest advances and deployments in military, utility distributed, remote, and campus/commercial microgrids.

Interest in microgrids as a strategy for ensuring energy security and reliability is growing worldwide, especially in the wake of events such as Hurricane Sandy. Military installations, hospitals, data centers and remote off-grid regions that must have dependable power – no matter what – are increasingly turning to the microgrid paradigm. This is helping to drive a projected 330% microgrid capacity expansion from 1,400 MW in 2011 to 4.7 GW by 2017, and sector revenue growth of 467% -- from $3 billion to $17 billion -- during the same period, according to a recent report by Pike Research.*

To help energy professionals maximize the potential effectiveness and ROI of this emerging technology area, the Microgrid World Forum, March 12-14, 2013 in Irvine, California, will bring together a full constellation of industry players from around the world for three days of focused information sharing, case study updates, regulatory discussions, and one-on-one networking. The aim is to better understand the opportunities and challenges facing the microgrid paradigm, and how utilities and end users alike can leverage it for improved energy reliability, quality, and revenue generation.

"Microgrids are essential to realizing the performance promises of the smart grid worldwide," says Kurt Yeager, Vice Chairman of the Galvin Electricity Initiative and a member of the Forum's Program Advisory Group. "When the conventional electricity grid is interconnected and operating in concert with distribution microgrids, the reliability, efficiency, environmental performance, consumer empowerment and security results are immense. These very positive results are essential to achieving a truly secure sustainable future throughout the world."

Thirty-three speakers from a range of utility, end user, regulatory, and technology stakeholders will discuss such issues as operational realities and safety, business models and market opportunities, regulatory challenges, system design and management, cyber security, interconnection and interoperability, and recent case studies of microgrid deployment worldwide.

"The importance of the microgrid from managing reliability and renewables to managing costs is burgeoning," states Professor Scott Samuelsen, program host. "A portfolio of stakeholders is required to both understand and systematically address the complexities associated with the opportunities that smart microgrids portend."

Companies confirmed to participate in the Forum include ConEdison of New York, NRG Energy, Southern California Edison, ABB, DNV KEMA, U.S. Department of Defense, Cal ISO, Lockheed Marting, SAIC, Honeywell, Sandia National Laboratories, Burns & McDonnell, Pareto Energy , CERTS, ETAP, NEDO, and many others.

"We've reserved plenty of time for networking and in-depth presentations," says Daniel Coran, program manager. "This Forum will be a unique opportunity to drill down and come away with solid strategies for moving forward in this key growth area over the next three to five years."

Keynote presentations and executive panel discussions will feature a range of senior industry leaders, including:

• Hon. Bob Foster, Chairman, California ISO; Mayor, City of Long Beach
• Franklin H. Holcomb, Energy Branch Chief, US Army Constrution Engineering Research Laboratory (CERL)
• Ralph D. Masiello, Innovation Director and Senior Vice President, DNV KEMA
• Mark E. Irwin, Director of Technology Development, Southern California Edison
• Kurt Yeager, Vice Chairman, Galvin Electricity Initiative
• Siddhartha Sachdeva, Senior Director-Innovation, NRG Energy
• Paul De Martini, Managing Director, Newport Consulting Group
• Scott Samuelsen, Director of the Advanced Power and Energy Program, Univ. California, Irvine

The conference will be preceded by a half-day workshop on March 12, featuring a close look at the microgrid demonstration project at University of California, Irvine and the Irvine Smart Grid Demonstration (ISGD) led by Southern California Edison with support from the Department of Energy. Attendees will hear from technology project leaders spearheading the initiatives, then adjourn for on-site tours of each demonstration.

"The fifty year old campus is an acclaimed model of energy efficiency, LEED certified buildings, and advanced metering and management," says Professor Samuelsen. "The campus design and infrastructure are perfectly structured as a proven microgrid test bed, and the ISGD project is shrewdly positioned to leverage the assets and potential of the microgrid in the smart grid future."

Organized by the Smart Grid Observer with guidance from a distinguished industry Program Advisory Committee, the agenda for the World Forum includes in-depth seminar sessions on:

• International Overview: Microgrid Drivers, Trends, and Growth Sectors
• U.S. Department of Energy Activities and Initiatives - Moving Forward
• Microgrid Opportunities and Challenges Across Industry Sectors
• Microgrid Distributed Generation, Interconnection, and Interoperability
• Energy Surety Microgrids and the SPIDERS Program
• A Practical Look Into Microgrid Development And Lessons Learned
• Utility-Scale Applications of Microgrids
• Key Microgrid Initiatives Around the World
• Operational Realities of a Large Office/ Research Campus Microgrid
• Microgrid Operations, Safety, Economics, and Policy
• Renewable Energy in Microgrids

Early bird registration is available through February 12, 2013. For full information, including registration, sponsorship, and exhibition opportunities, visit or email:

*Excerpted from Pike Research: Microgrids: Distributed Energy Systems for Campus, Military, Remote, Community, and Commercial & Industrial Applications: Market Analysis and Forecasts, 1Q 2012

About The Smart Grid Observer

The Smart Grid Observer is a free, weekly e-newsletter that covers the latest news, research findings, and technology developments surrounding the global smart grid industry. Our coverage extends to utilities, equipment vendors, government agencies, standards bodies, industry associations, universities, and research groups. For the most recent webinars and research notes, visit


Daniel R. Coran
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