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Graciosa – “the graceful one” – is the second smallest Azorean island and has approximately 4,500 inhabitants. Inconspicuously located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, it may not seem like the starting point of a global revolution, but Graciosa is about to inaugurate a truly disruptive shift in how power is produced in remote locations around the world.
As on many islands of similar size, the share of renewables on Graciosa is currently limited to only 15 percent annually. No matter how many wind turbines or photovoltaic power plants are added to the grid, the lion’s share of the electricity supply has to be produced by diesel generators.
We break the dependence on diesel fuel. On this Portuguese island, we are – in close collaboration with the Azorean power utility EDA – establishing the world’s first megawatt-scale grid-forming renewable energy system. The “island mode” capability of the fully automated battery system will enable up to 100 percent spontaneous renewable power penetration and allow the Portuguese island to replace around two-thirds of its fossil fuel generation with cheap renewable energy.
Scott Macaw, Co-founder and Director of Recharge
Our project reduces the overall cost of energy. Unlike most wind and solar projects up to now, the transition to renewables will not be financed by a feed-in tariff that is then borne by all electricity customers. Instead, the project company running the clean energy system will receive a portion of the money, which the Diesel fuel would have otherwise cost, creating a win-win situation for all stakeholders.
Graciosa – “the graceful one” – is located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.
battery system combined with a 4.5 MW wind park and a 1 MW PV power plant.
sponantenous renewable energy penetration.
Intelligent power controls and a purpose-built Energy Management System by Younicos are combined with a 4 MW battery storage system powered by Leclanché lithium ion cells, a 4.5 MW wind park and a 1 MW photovoltaic power plant. The system allows to power the island by wind and solar energy with the existing diesel needed only for back-up power during prolonged periods of unfavorable weather. Thanks to this grid-forming battery park, the island will soon be home to the world’s first renewable energy-based microgrid, which replaces expensive diesel-generated electricity with much cheaper clean energy. The resulting savings from the energy conversion will be shared between the investors and Portuguese end consumers.