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One growing energy trend that is gaining steam in large residential areas like Myrtle Beach is the construction of microgrid. These miniature electricity hubs can operate independently of the large power grid, allowing entire neighborhoods access to reliable power in times of crisis. Microgrids can mitigate the problems that an extended utility outage poses for residents and businesses. 

Understanding Your Place in the Grid

“The grid,” or electrical grid, is the name given to the interconnected system that moves electricity from a power generating system to homes and businesses in a region. When power leaves the generating station (from Santee Cooper in our area, for example) it starts to divide and reroute through transmission lines and substations before being delivered to individual homes and businesses through distribution lines above or below ground. As a result, when there is a problem at a substation, it affects all homes and businesses “down stream” from that station. 

The grid connects thousands and even tens of thousands of homes in a region. An outage requiring repair to a transforming station or substation can leave many folks in the dark for hours, days, or even weeks. However, this is where the microgrid offers clear benefits.

What Is the Microgrid and How Does It Work?

Energy.gov defines a microgrid as “a local energy grid with control capability, which means it can disconnect from the traditional grid and operate autonomously.” Generators, batteries, and even solar panels supply a microgrid’s power. After a storm causes damage to a transformer or station on the grid, the microgrid takes over. This localized power source serves as a distributed generator for a neighborhood or small geographic area. 

Microgrids can serve designated communities or neighborhoods. The microgrid is a backup power solution for emergency situations like hurricanes. For large facilities with critical needs, a microgrid is a smart solution. It could power a university campus, hospital system, or manufacturing center, distributing power across separate buildings.

Learn More About Emergency Power Solutions

Ultimately, living in a coastal area like Myrtle Beach means there’s always the threat of severe weather and utility interruptions. Cooper Electrical Services provides emergency power solutions like residential and commercial generators. Generator technologies allow residents to maintain full power in their homes. For businesses, a commercial generator can help mitigate the economic impact of losing power. To learn more about our generator services, Call Cooper.